Amblin' Alameda: Fear of Forty

Amblin' Alameda: Fear of Forty

Morton Chalfy

A colleague of mine has posted that she is nearing the Big Four Oh (Uh Oh) and seems to be somewhat troubled by the prospect. She also asks why, after a certain age, people shouldn’t be allowed to just get fat.

In an effort to calm her thoughts and relieve any fat-anxiety she might have, I offer the following:

Fear of Forty is fear of death disguised as fear of aging – death, the inevitable is to be embraced and avoided. Mental acceptance, physical avoidance.

Forty is the onset of maturity. The hormonal balance is shifting from development to a rear-guard action. This plays into the fat-anxiety portion.

Forty is the first of the best decades of life. At forty we’re at the top of our game, (hard to accept sometimes) and on the path to not caring about things that aren’t important and discovering those that are. Kids and, eventually, grandkids figure prominently here.

The average life expectancy in the pre-modern world was about 47. Today it’s about 83. Forty isn’t even half way. Pace yourself. In the old days, if you didn’t have it all done by forty you’d have to forget it. Today most things can be put it off for a decade with little fear.

The old radio serial was titled Life Begins at Forty for a very good reason. After the insanities and hormonal urges of youth forty is the pause before menopause. Enjoy it.

As for fat-anxiety, if he won’t love you fat … someone else will. When fear of fat rises to an unacceptable level find a friend and walk like crazy.

In closing I want to say that the colleague in question barely can pass for thirty and other than her daughter’s pinchable cheeks there doesn’t seem to be any fat around.