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The Forty-Year-Old Freshman



Photo credit: Amanda Ambrose Photography


January: a time for new beginnings, a little more effort, and of course, personal reflection. I use it as a time to look back at where I’ve been and to consider where I’m going. For instance: this year I am going …

To be forty.

Am I afraid? NO. But there’s a very real sense of humility when I consider the path that has brought me here.

Turning twenty, what’s not to love? college, young love, a tiny little bum and perky…ideas!

Turning thirty was a charm!  I was successful, in a traditional sense: happy, healthy, with a great husband, owning and running a business while raising two young children and a dog.  The path ahead was predictable and clear–or so I thought.

Ten years have passed. I’m creeping up on forty, having left my career behind, as I embark upon…what, becoming a forty-year-old blogger? (Does that make me a Flogger? Paging Christian Grey)

I find myself reframing what success means– and deeply appreciating the events that brought me to where I am. And the path forward doesn’t seem obvious to me, anymore, at all. With the future so unclear, it would be easy to fall into a spiral of self-doubt and despair. But to quote Dana Carvey quoting George Bush: “Not Gonna Do It!”

2017 is going to be my year!

I’m treating this year like freshman year at a liberal arts college (without the fear and insecurities).

I will:

  • explore
  • take risks
  • reflect
  • have thoughtful conversations (with people who are and aren’t like me)
  • make new friends
  • drink on weeknights!
  • I’m going to EAT (with a little more sophistication and self-preservation in mind)

I’m going to do, and create, and bask. I’m going to scare the shit out of forty–instead of tip-toeing around it. This time my eyes are wide open. I want to inhale every experience as if it might be my last.  I hope you’ll be there right at my side.  If not in person, be with me in spirit–and create your own adventures. It’s never too late!

Here’s what I’ve got brewing for forty:


What’s on your list? 


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  • Jerome

    January 26, 2017

    A great “going forward”plan

  • aambrosephoto

    January 26, 2017

    It’s always great to wake up, and realize that nothing is set in stone NOR WOULD YOU WANT IT TO BE! Expansion! That’s where it is at!

    On my list: refine my studio craft, perfect my mojito, many visionquest style hikes, and OH YEAH watch you do standup😀

    • The Sunny Side

      January 26, 2017

      I said MAYBE! Ha! Your craft is pretty darn perfect, and I look forward to judging your Mojito!

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