40s

Why (and How) It's Hitting Gen X Women
I grew tired of pretending my stretch marks didn't exist from carrying a 9-pound baby in my womb. Now, when I look at my belly in the mirror, I see a courageous woman who brought a beautiful child into the world -- my best achievement to date.
I took time to heal -- probably not enough time, truth be told -- and then I decided to try my luck in the dating world. What I didn't realize was just how much dating had changed since I was 18.
I also realize it is not only skin deep. We are reading all sorts of ludicrous books on feminism that we may never have picked up 15 years ago (for me, it's Fear of Flying.. I'm not knocking Ms. Jong, but I would not have appreciated it in my 30s). We are determining our identities and one step further and more subconsciously, our legacies.
If you downsize in your 40s, and invest that $75,000 in a portfolio with a mix of stocks and bonds with a 6.5 percent annual rate of return, it could grow to nearly $250,000 over 20 years.
Though you might feel settled, becoming complacent could impact your financial well-being. Don't fall prey to these common money mistakes that people often make in their 40s.
People will make time for you if you're important to them. And they pretty much won't if you're not.
Exercising is essential, but so is eating a bag of kettle corn popcorn occasionally. It's all about balance.
Reaching your fifth decade is a milestone, and hopefully you have learned a few things on the way. Here are some of the important financial lessons that are good to learn before turning 40.
The fact that I'm fat -- yes, I said "fat," because it's an accurate adjective and not an insult -- does nothing to add or detract from my value as a person and as a woman of great worth.
There is comfort in boredom. Making lunches, washing dishes and doing laundry are all reminders that it is privilege to not only take care of myself, but to take care of others.
You eat things like brussel sprouts... AND ENJOY THEM. I love them roasted with a little bit of oil and salt. I never would have given them a second thought if I was younger.
Knowing myself better -- which of course comes with age -- has helped me know what I value most from friends better.
I am more comfortable in my own skin, calmer about the challenges I face and able to function better in my relationships in my personal and professional life. I also look a hell of a lot better because I have more money than I did at 20!
These are buoyant, happy times, and as much as I loved spending my teens in the 80s, I am just as thrilled to be living out my 40s in the 'teens. And at the end of this decade, when I do turn 50, I will know that it's going to be even better than I could have imagined.
What is this about? Is it stubborn denial? Do we all still think of ourselves as 18? The aches in my back, weakness in my knee and wrinkles on my face all speak to my actual age. As do the, you know, children. And yet. And still.
I would rather keep trying for the life I want and falling down awkwardly sometimes then trying to control every part of my world around me and end up freaking out every time things don't go as planned.
While taking a cab to the airport yesterday, the cabbie asked me the most horrifying question. It seems like I've committed a crime against society.
Who is this man standing over me? Oh. It's Ryan Gosling. I wish he weren't wearing a shirt. Wait. He's saying something to me, but I can't hear it because the ringing is back.