looking back, 40s were my best years. seriously, it's a time to explore and grow without the anxiety/immaturity of youth or the loudening ticking clock of later years. perhaps not as carefree as in the past, but that's life.
One thing I've noticed is that people don't strike me as old until they hit their 80s these days. Bowie was 69 when he died and he never struck me as an old man, Trump's 73 and even with all the dodgy cosmetic surgery he still doesn't come across as old to me yet I was watching a clip of Don Rickles on Carson the other day and they both looked ancient despite being in their late 40s.
I think it's the attitude and demeanor as much as the change in fashion, nutrition, lifestyle and so on; the war probably played a part too. You see someone like Lee Marvin or Steve McQueen or Charles Bronson now and it looks like they were born middle-aged.
Yeah but I was watching this documentary about Bowie, my favorite man, and he was doing this big world tour in the 00s, fit as a fiddle, prancing around thin and wired, bags of energy every night, adoring female backing singers fawning over him, you look so young David, how do you do it David, etc. Then BANG massive heart attack.
Turning 40 itself is no big deal. Unmemorable compared to other big life events, I'd say. (However, looking back on it is a different matter and makes me feel somewhat queasy with terror, like balancing above a precipice. So I'm half with Craner on this one.)
John is right though - making it is also a cause for celebration.
Also, speak to loads of 50-somethings, and they will - as perhaps in this thread, I'm not sure? - reassure you mightily.