Turning 40…Celebrating in the Maldives!

Turning 40 on the Indian Ocean

Turning 40 on the Indian Ocean

I can’t believe it…I’m 40. My mom used to say that she couldn’t see what her life would be like past 25. And now, I’m 40. I can remember the excitement of 13, 18 and 21, the tears at 20 when I was no longer a teenager and the freak-outs that came with the realization that I was 30-how old! And now this? Strange though it may seem, I’m not as concerned as I was at 20 or 30. Now, I feel lucky…lucky to have made it to this time in my life and finally, actually able to feel comfortable in my own skin. But let’s face it, to the majority of the population with whom I’ve spent my life working…I’m old! I know, I know, 40 is the new 30, right? Now I look at the 70-year old couple holding hands on the boardwalk and smile hoping that I get to experience that one day. And I sit in amazement at the grandparents I know who are enjoying life at the age of 100. Truly, age is really just a number. I think this is the first birthday that made me start to think about that. Reflective and happy…..this is a special year and I’m so very excited to be spending it enjoying white sand, crystal clear blue of the Indian Ocean and paradise in a beach bungalow in the Maldives!

The day started with an outdoor private yoga session-full wheel for the first time in my adult life!

The day started with an outdoor private yoga session-full wheel for the first time in my adult life!

I’ve been lucky to be on the planet for 40 years. I’ve been lucky to not have to worry about clean water, safe food, health insurance or a roof over my head. I have been given the gift of family, wonderful friends, a formidable education and the opportunity of choice. I’ve worked with some fabulous people and count myself lucky to have close friends around the world. I’ve visited more than half of the states in the United States and over fifty-five countries. I’ve stood at the kotel, swam in the Great Barrier Reef, jumped into Devil’s Pool and traveled around the world twice. I went on a short trip to New Zealand and met a guy who changed my life. Our first date was in Hong Kong, he proposed at Wicked in Australia, we got married in New York and honeymooned around the world. I’ve been feeling quite pensive and reflective these past few months. Is this middle age?

5 September 2014-a major toes in the sand kind of day!

5 September 2014-a major toes in the sand kind of day!

The babes of 1974 turn 40 this year. Gone are the days of teenage drama (unless you count our friends who now have children entering this phase) and college all-nighters. Now we enter the phase of reunions, not knowing the newest artist on the radio and finding out if we need reading glasses. It’s funny though, the more people I talk to, the more I hear, ‘I feel the best I ever have’ and I can’t agree more. Thoughts and interests continue to change as life and time continues to march on. On my list of things to do before I turned forty, all I could think to put was ‘wear blue nail polish on my toes’… check! Thank you to all those people who are and have been a part of my life. Feeling lucky, happy and grateful for so very many of life’s gifts, I am really looking forward to the year and future ahead!

Birthday cake delivered to the sand!

Birthday cake delivered to the sand!

40 things to be grateful for at 40

  1. Health
  2. My husband
  3. Family and friends
  4. For time spent with amazing people who left the world all too soon
  5. Glitter
  6. The gifts that come with waking up beside the beach and ocean daily
  7. Lifelong friends around the world
  8. The ability to swim and teach others to do the same
  9. Sunshine and endless beach days
  10. Toes in the sand kind of days
  11. My sleep away camp experience
  12. Shelter, food, clean water and health insurance
  13. Dark chocolate, pretzels, devil’s food cupcakes, and French fries
  14. The ability to volunteer and make a difference in people’s lives
  15. My college years at Brandeis University that and those who shared it with me
  16. Special teachers and counselors who believed in me along the way
  17. Courage to take a leap and believe that the net will appear
  18. Travel and its many incredible gifts
  19. People in the medical profession and those who risk their lives to help others
  20. Karma
  21. New friends made through shared experiences
  22. Freedom and those who fight for the rights of others to have that freedom
  23. The lessons and perspective taught by natural disasters
  24. My asthma medications and Benadryl that help me breathe and manage allergies
  25. Life’s simple pleasures
  26. S’mores and the profound joy they bring
  27. Nature and all its beauty
  28. My USY years that taught so much more than religious identity
  29. The kindness of strangers
  30. Airplane travel that allows the world to be much smaller than we think it is
  31. Time spent with friends: smiling, laughing, eating, learning and just being
  32. Picnics, campouts, one-match fires, walks on the beach, whitecaps and sounds of the waves
  33. Yoga and the flexibility, strength, and piece of mind it brings
  34. Flip flops and the happiness they bring to my toes
  35. The ability to dream and attempt to make those dreams into a reality
  36. Laughter
  37. Perspective and experience
  38. Technology, science and the researchers who create cures and inventions to better the planet
  39. Adventures both large and small
  40. Life and all it brings

The guy who helped to make this one of the most spectacular days EVER!

With happy toes wiggling in the Indian Ocean and lots of love from the Maldives!

Arriving back to the bungalow to this island floral birthday surprise!

8 responses »

  1. Now THAT’s the way to celebrate a birthday! Congratulations, Stacey.

    Oh, and add to your list: “The ability to write.” (You’ve got it. That’s for sure!)


  2. Happy Birthday Stacey. Enjoy every minute of life. We only go around once so continue to make it a good one. Jean Masterson.

  3. Belated birthday blessings, Stacey! Welcome to the years of life getting better and better. You’re fortunate to know the joys of love and gratitude and travel. Here’s to another 365-day adventure! Enjoy.

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