...Despite all that has changed, I would never want to be 20 again. Sure, I was thinner, with loads of energy and free time. Here at 40, I have more responsibilities, more wrinkles and more drooping body parts, but I also have three things I didn't have back then: self-awareness, confidence and a really awesome kid.
So, to celebrate my passage into this fourth decade, here's a list of 40 things I can do now that I couldn't do then.
1. Cook a decent meal.
2. Make a killer cup of coffee.
3. Tell the truth.
4. Have a healthy relationship.
5. Look past a person's flaws.
6. Look past my own flaws.
7. Stay home on New Years Eve.
8. Pay my bills.
9. Go out without makeup on.
10. Go to the gynecologist without being embarrassed.
11. Go to a therapist without feeling ashamed.
12. Speak to a group of strangers.
13. Buy the good wine.
14. Handle rejection.
15. Read Didion instead of Cosmo.
16. Be happy for other people, instead of jealous.
17. Ignore the trends (skinny jeans included) and wear what looks good on my body.
18. Ignore the Kardashians, Rihanna and every other celebrity du jour.
19. Ignore people's nasty comments.
20. Ignore my ex.
21. Stand up for myself.
22. Stand up for people I love.
23. Sit at a concert.
24. Take a cab home instead of insisting I'm OK to drive.
25. Wear a hat when it's cold.
26. Stop worrying about whether people like me or think I'm pretty.
27. Be my kid's hero.
28. Show her what independence looks like.
29. Show her what real beauty is.
30. Drive the speed limit.
31. Drop that toxic friend.
32. Avoid the drama.
33. Swear in front of my mom.
34. Swap the tanning lotion for eye cream.
35. Focus on the smart guy instead of the handsome guy.
36. Say "no" to stuff.
37. Skip the gym and go for a walk outside.
38. Stop trying to be perfect.
39. Let go of expectation.
40. Adjust to changes.
And one to grow on: Understand that the best is yet to come.