I remember my worst birthday was when I turned twenty. I'd been told all my life (those life-lesson-filled teen years) that once responsibility (adulthood) stuck it's ugly foot onto your back, things never looked up again. It took me until I was about twenty-three to realize things were cooking along pretty nicely with the occasional pain thrown in, just like it always had.
I consider the day Ben was born just about the happiest day of my life. Carl would know that the most important day of my life was the day we were married, but that day was crazy, harried, and full of stress and frantickness. My parents had just met him a day or so before and my meeting his parents was still months in the future. We hardly knew each other, for that matter. But Ben. I could hardly believe it. He was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. I'd waited my whole life for him. But I've loved all the days with him since.
It was Christmastime almost, and he was the greatest gift I had ever received. Still is. I'm still breathlessly grateful. Forty is a number. Ben is Ben. Forty comes and goes. Ben is forever.
Brad came along a couple of years later and that day was wonderful too. Just as wonderful. Another happiest day of my life. Another greatest gift. Someone else that lasts and lasts and lasts.
You can't count those in years. Forty is nothing. I scoff at forty. He'll figure that out soon enough. Life is great for what it is, every day of it. Numbers are nothing. Life is everything. I promise.