The big 4-0

Lee's Summit JournalDecember 6, 2013 

Somewhere around 11 a.m. today, I turned 40 years old.

It’s been a wild ride, for sure.

But I hear age is just a number (said no one on their 40th birthday) and that I shouldn’t dwell on it. OK, fair enough.

Turning 40 certainly has given me pause to think about just what it is I am doing on this earth, though, and what other numbers (since 40 shouldn’t be on my radar) I should indeed be focusing on.

Here’s a few thoughts:

My daughter has been in my life for 1,171 days.

By comparison, I have been around for 14,610 days.

I’ve been publisher of this newspaper, the proud Lee’s Summit Journal, for approximately 1,763 days.

In that time, I’ve written more than 250,000 words in my columns and stories that have printed in the Journal. And readers have only disliked about a quarter of those words. Give or take.

Speaking of the Journal, this newspaper has been open for nearly 50,000 days – more than 132 years. We’re the second oldest business in Lee’s Summit (Bank of Lee’s Summit takes the cake as the oldest).

So, 40 isn’t supposed to mean much. Someone even told me recently 40 was the new 35. I don’t even know what that means. At 35 I had even less of a clue than I have now, no Addy by my side and I was living in Iowa. Don’t get me wrong, I love Iowa. But 35 seems like forever ago.

Both of my grandmothers lived to be 100. And God bless her, my Grandma Beaudoin is still with us.

Age never seemed to matter much to either of them.

In today’s world, we cannot ask someone’s age during a job interview, while getting a loan or even in day-to-day conversation.

I could just as well tell everyone I am 38. Or 36. Or 14,610 days old and let them do the math.

So, I am not going to dwell on turning 40. How could I?

I have infinite blessings in my life, wonderful friends and a support group that would be there at a moment’s notice, family that pitches in to help out wherever needed, a “never a dull day” career and an awesome daughter.

I do need to stop more during my next 14,000 days and reflect more about the good and positive around me.

If I’ve learned anything in 40 years, that may be the biggest and most worth while lesson.


John Beaudoin is the publisher of the Lee’s Summit Journal. To comment, call 816-282-7001 or e-mail

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