My forties have been good to me
I took a while to get over my thirties but some of the tinkering work I did then, in among the realities of life, prepared me well for my forties.
I started in a permanent job after doing a number of casual and contract positions in an increasingly tough environment and I made it my own, for good and ill.
I turned forty in a new job where other staff barely knew me, my marriage had been broken up and was still raw, friends were scattered far and wide and I didn't yet have money.
Once I got used to being a team leader and advising and requesting things of other people, instead of running around trying to provide service to senior colleagues, I began to appreciate the many features that made my workplace appealing. Salary increments came at regular intervals and my children became adults.
I spent five years alone in Katoomba, consoled by my proximity to fruit market and supermarket. Now I'm settled and happy and productive. If I have to turn fifty then this is the best circumstance to do it in.
I've been a member of a poetry list and a couple of message boards, maintained two regular blogs and a LiveJournal, founded two websites with their own URLs, studied every facet of webpage design and am still a numbskull when it comes to the actual application of this knowledge. I'd have more chance of telling you what nature of information I haven't addressed in my reading and writing. I'm writing songs and poems at a consistent rate.
I now qualify for long service leave and, depending on how I feel when I have straddled that fence and landed with a thud on the other side, I might start planning for that transition into spending more time on the creative side; including the grunt work of getting my work, and what I bring to it, out there. I haven't ruled out forming a band if I can get the right group together as I'd like to sing again and have an opportunity to bring some of those songs to an audience.
I actually did no performance throughout my forties, which was certainly not the case in the previous two decades. But my own singing has strengthened so I even sing some of those early songs differently. It's not a conscious decision so much as the emphasis I sense is right.
My sister, who has never been out of WA, is now seeing all the parts of the place I live that have had significance for me in the last fifteen years. I am seeing things through new eyes too as we're visiting sites I don't normally go or would not be in the same mode if I did.