Staring down the road to 40….

That may not be an appropriate title – staring down the street to 40 is more like it. My 40th Birthday is just 2 days away. I entered this world on June 22, 1979 at the Coliseum Hospital around 7:45 p.m. That was about 11ish hours after my cousin, Jennifer who was born in the same room. The same day we entered the world & began life, a close family friend of Wanda’s (Jenn’s mom) lost hers. Her name was Lynn & she died in a car accident right after she left our hospital room. Talk about the circle of life. God gives & He takes away.

Mom & Wanda & me & Jenn were all in one room. How fun is that? 😊 Jenn was plump & bald & I was scrawny with itty bitty eyes. (Later in life, I got plump & she got scrawny ☺️) We both favored our grandfathers in those newborn hospital pics. From that day forward, we were like sisters. We don’t talk as often these days or see each other all that much but our bond remains.

It was always so fun sharing a birthday with a cousin & we were the first grands on the maternal side so you know how that goes. Spoiled rotten was an understatement. To this day, we blame our Ma-Ma & Me-Ma for our expensive taste. Rhody & Jane are extraordinary women who had the most special friendship. They were sister in laws but genuinely loved one another & the Macon Mall loved them. ☺️ They taught Jenn & I so much but they deserve their own post so I won’t ramble on about them here.

As I prepare to celebrate my 40th year, I want to share 40 things that I know.

1. Family is everything. I am so thankful for my family of origin but also extremely thankful for friends that have become family.

2. Life is short & fragile.

3. Forgiveness is a must. It heals you too.

4. God is good.

5. God has planned immeasurably more for each of us!

6. Hurt people hurt people.

7. Harsh words sting.

8. Writing words is therapeutic.

9. Counseling is a GOOD thing.

10. Grandparents should live forever.

11. So should parents.

12. Growth is hard but so rewarding.

13. Courage is hard but so necessary.

14. Humor is so helpful but cutting your bangs is not.

15. Abundant grace is necessary for all of us.

16. Learning to have tolerance for people not like me is hard but important.

17. God loves working miracles.

18. God specializes in brokenness.

19. Little sisters are gifts.

20. Love covers a multitude of sins.

21. Exercise is good.

22. Love does.

23. Babies are delightful.

24. Colic is not. (BG taught us that)

25. Trials make us strong in weak places.

26. Hate is not the opposite of love – indifference is.

27. I don’t understand all of the Bible but I don’t let what I don’t understand interfere with what I do.

28. I was not nearly as smart as I thought I was 20 years ago. #hindsight

29. I regret having such a smart mouth & talking back to my momma.

30. The apple indeed does not fall from the tree & we are all a lot more like our parents than we care to admit.

31. One of the only things we are control of is our attitude. Make it good.

32. Choices lead & feelings follow.

33. Kids need parents who show up.

34. Life is messy.

35. Marriage takes work.

36. When you have a choice to make, choose wisely.

37. Hugs are good for your soul.

38. So is time spent with old friends.

39. You can’t make old friends.

40. Age is just a number.

Happy Birthday to me & Jenn & my best buddy, Ryan VanSon! (There is a previous post about him 😉)

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All my best,

Jodi