The blog of photographer and musician, Kim Ayres

The Big Four-Oh

They say that life begins at 40, yet statistically a certain number of people around the world must die on their 40th birthday, which must make this one of the most ironic clichés for the beloved of the dearly departed.

40 always looms as one of these big ones. I guess it’s most associated with the time that people begin their mid-life crisis, but as I’ve been in the middle of mine for the best part of 25 years already, I don’t know how much impact it’s likely to have.

I preferred being a teenager to being an infant; I preferred my 20s to my teens; I preferred my 30s to my 20s; so did I peak at 39, or am I likely to prefer my 40s to my 30s?

Certainly I feel better about who I am than I did a decade ago. And if I can get the tiredness and depressive bouts under control, then there’s a lot to be positive about for the forthcoming decade. I’m more in control of my life, have a far greater level of self-confidence and am several pounds lighter.

My father always said that birthdays were a celebration of life: they confirm that you have survived another year despite the shit the gods have thrown at you. He changed his tune when he hit 60 and has been a grumpy old sod every birthday since, however I liked his original sentiment and have always tried to adopt it.

So today I turn 40. I’m still alive and the decade ahead looks promising.

Happy birthday to me :)


It turns out that the 25th of October was also Picasso’s birthday. He would have been celebrating his 85th on the day I was born.

So in honour of this momentous coincidence, I have scanned the web and discovered a place you can create your own Picasso self-portrait. Here’s mine:

Click on the image to create your own.


SheBah said...

Happy Birthday, Kim - hope you have lots of champagne and cake and hope your next decade is your most fulfilling ever!

quinn said...


Have a wonderful day, best wishes and I have to agree with your father I do try to look at it as having survived another sh*t filled year lol....I hope I won't get too cranky when I am 60....I still hope to make it to 60 LOL. ( you can always look at it as you are a couple years younger than me ).

I am going to go check out the picaso site shortly.

BStrong said...

HAPPY 40th Brother!!!!!!!!!!

Hey, you got all the mid-life crisis shit out of the way at 39, so 40 should be a piece of cake for ya.
Now if you can get everything and everyone to cooperate in your life you might have a chance:)

Have a great and memorable day.

Cheers to the 40th

quinn said...

hi again kim.
I did a picaso thing.
title was the faces of quinn
have a look if you like LOL it was fun.

Jupiter's Girl said...

Happy solar return, Kim. I love my forties. I had about a 15 minute crying jag on my 40th, despite the chip on my shoulder that was determined NOT to feel any angst about turning that corner - into what my self-pity said was my physical, social, and mental decline. I absolutely feel that was ridiculous to cry, but it was such a relief/release.

Of course, I had to look at your horoscope and see that today Venus, Mars, and the Sun are conjunct your Sun. My favorite astrologer, Rob Hand, wrote this about the solar return: “…this is a day when you should make new beginnings. You are receiving a new impulse from the energy center within you, as symbolized by the Sun. Therefore any new venture that you start at this time will ride the crest of this new energy and will very likely come to an acceptable conclusion. Whatever you do or begin today will bear the stamp of your individuality more than anything else. This is the day to assert yourself anew. Plan to let the world know who you are, not arrogantly or smugly, but so that everyone knows you are here. You have needs and wants like everyone else, as well as something to contribute to the world.”

With Mars and Venus fueling that fire, today ought to be a show-stopper of a day for you - making you feel good and therefore everyone around you should benefit.

There is also transiting Mercury and Jupiter adding to the mix with your thoughts and sensitivities by conjuncting your natal Mercury and Neptune - giving you great powers of concentration and putting you in touch with more global concerns and maybe some solutions for the issues at hand. Excellent and auspicious transits for the upcoming year.

I learned a long time ago that the solar return is the time to make new years’ resolutions. Backed by solar energy, it gives the intention power. I quit smoking many years ago on my birthday. Affirm that you are healthy and live a fulfilling life.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, mate! Have a bloody good glass of mead!

Belovedlife said...

Happy birthday Kim! Wishing you many more happy years discovering who you are....after all do we ever really outgrow our mid life crisis?

Andraste said...

Happy Birthday, Kim, and many more! Welcome to the 40 and up club. It's not so bad. The upholstery could use replacing, but the barman knows a thing or two, and the bog gets cleaned once in a while. Use your coaster!

Kim Ayres said...

Thank you all for your birthday wishes.

I've had a great day - lunch out with my wife, DVDs and books to enjoy and a birthday tea that has left me utterly stuffed.

I'm now about to waddle down the stairs and plonk myself in front of the TV. I expect to be snoring through whatever programme I'm supposed to be watching, fairly soon.

Stella said...

Happy Birthday Kim!!

eva said...

Happy birthday Kim!

(I barely made it here before midnight)

Looking forward to reading about you being 40...

fatmammycat said...

Happy Birthday Kim. You're starting this decade trimmer, healthier and mere fabulous than ever. Have a great day. You're excluded from my wishings of ill will on everyone today.

Binty McShae said...

Kim! You have used the F word on your blog!!!! Okay, it's in the BC cartoon, but you've posted it ON YOUR BLOG!!!! Wow, turning 40 really hit you hard, eh?

Oh yeah, and happy birthday!

Kim Ayres said...

Stella - Thank you

Eva - it starts today...

FMC - I am honoured

Binty - I thought that as it was in small writing no one would notice...

Kate said...

Belated Happy Birthday!

Kim Ayres said...

Thank you, Kate. When's yours?

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