I used to brush off all the comments from people about how 40 is just the beginning, how they’d never trade what they have for youth, ect., etc., etc. Until I turned 40. Somehow the entire world seemed to open up for me since my birthday and I’ve never felt better about my body, my relationships and my life.
But it was challenged on a recent trip to Miami where a seed of doubt, as small (and possibly as mighty) as a mustard seed surfaced as a wonder, grew to a thought, and then blossomed to a full-fledged criticism. Could I, a middle-aged woman whose BMI barely runs in the “normal” category, who delights in the sound of dishes being done by her lover, who lusts after the likes of Robert Downey Jr. and finds boyband heartthrobs juvenile (think anyone with a first name of “Justin”), could I possibly fit into the nightlife scene at Miami Beach?
After nearly a month of in-and-out of-the-hospital with our 6 year old son, the conference-turned-vacation that had been planned long before could not have been more perfect in timing. Once we found out the hotel where we would be staying, Randy discovered it was the home of LIV, the self-proclaimed “quintessential” nightspot.
According to the website, LIV “fuses the appeal of an ultra exclusive lounge and a high-energy nightclub. LIV™ is home to celebrities, VIPs and Miami’s local party crowd. Within over 18,000 square feet of striking architectural design and lavish decor, DJs spin everything from rock to hip hop to house. . . . Admission fee and upscale dress code apply. LIV management reserves the right to refuse admission to anyone, in its sole discretion.”
He immediately began preparing, upgrading his hipster nerd appearance with some fashion specs, hot jeans and a modern sport jacket. I retreated to denial. Ultraexclusive, upscale dress code, refuse admission, party crowd - these words were daunting.
Upon arrival, the first thing he wanted to do was check out LIV. I was ill-prepared for the ambiance of Miami, a city that lives by the motto “dress to impress” where women from around the globe nonchalantly ooze sexy with just the breathy sound of their exotic name, where the swimsuits have bling and the flip flops are stilettos. Stepping outside of your hotel room was a fashion show, let alone trying to enter a chic nightclub.
But it was also Randy’s birthday weekend, so I gussied up in the hippest dress and heels I brought, muzzling the demons mockin loudly about how much older, grayer and flabbier I was than my counterparts, and showed up for him. I smiled nervously as we got in line, approaching the bouncer who I knew could smash my self esteem in a matter of nano-seconds with a shake of his head. Instead, we were in. Packed in a surprisingly mixed crowd of young and older, beautiful and gorgeous to enjoy the spinning of the DJ for the night.
1:30am hit me like a brick wall. Suddenly the music seemed endless, the crowd incited claustrophobia and the lighting effects left me dizzy. My 40-year-old Cinderella clock had struck and I quickly escaped fearing my spanx would soon give way to a pumpkin-esque midsection.
As a Mormon, my “one-true” nightclubbing years were spent as a newly wed trying to prove I was much older and more mature than my years let on, dutifully planning my family while my peers were partying it up. Here I was on the flip side trying to be hip enough despite my parent card as my peers now gladly trade in their dancing shoes for evenings with new babies.
My husband claims that the definition of being old is making a decision based on your age. Is he right, or might I be too old for a night club?