I turn forty in a few weeks.

I am okay with it, truly. Glad of it, in fact.

Turning forty means I somehow survived my thirties.

I am working on something, a retrospective of the past decade. I am thinking of giving each year its own space, bound in its own specific sentences. It will not be an easy task. It has been a long decade, a hard one wrought with loss and woven with joy. I learned a lot. More than I thought I needed to know. I gave birth to two babies in this decade. Moved more times than I have fingers. Fell in love then had my heart shattered. Made a million obvious epiphanies. Started reading, really reading, and writing again. Lost family members. Lost my marriage but gained a partnership. Grew a lot of cherry tomatoes. Had a dog, lost a dog. Had a cat, lost a cat.

I am nervous about looking back over my years, to be honest. Not because of how I spent my time but how I wasted it. I have been really foolish over and over and know that there are these huge pockets, abysses, of waste. I am ashamed of being wasteful. Of wasting my money on projects I never wanted to do, of wasting my time on paths I did not want to follow, of wasting my love on people who did not want it.

And yet, and yet, nothing is ever wasted. Especially not love.

So next time, I will start with my thirtieth year.