Starting Over at

I believe in second chances--especially for women turning 40.Whenever I say "I believe in second chances" I'm reminded of the Kevin Kostner speech in Bull Durham--at least this part:.I believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days. .Because I especially believe that finding love is possible at any age--at 25 or 95. In my own journey toward my second chance, I changed husbands, religions, politics, states, careers, and along the way, I met my father for the first time.

But I'm not alone in starting my life over at 40.Paula Dean is one of my favorite women because she is everything I write about. At 40, she turned her life around, started a catering business called "The Bag Lady" that led to a successful restaurant, "Lady & Sons," authored cookbooks (she self-published her first cookbook until Random House bought it), and created her own show on the Food Network. Standing on the red carpet at the movie premiere of her first movie, Elizabethtown, Paula Dean said, "I'm one lucky chick.".

What's her appeal? Her authenticity. It shows in her food. It shows in her personality. It shows in her love life. This didn't all happen to her because she had facelifts, eye jobs, tummy tucks, the latest fashionable hairstyle or even the latest celebrity diet. It happened because she is truly herself.

She is Paula Dean and what you see is what you get. No facades here. No cloaking her real self.

No trying to be somebody she isn't. This is the kind of story I love. The kind of story that inspires me. And the kind of story I hope inspires you.I know there are women out there who are also taking their second chance--starting over--going back to school, starting a new career or at least a new phase in their life, getting married for the first, second, or third time.Sometimes women over 40 get discouraged about their perceived lack of possibilities for their age?-especially when it comes to finding love.

They say, "I'm too old and/or too fat" or whatever the fear is standing in their way. But finding love is about being yourself. And when you are yourself, when you've embraced your true self?faults and all--the confidence comes. And it's that confidence and authenticity that attracts a real man?-the kind of man you really want. Because it's not about the physical--going to the gym in search of the perfect body, although physical exercise just plain makes your body feel better, which can translate into feeling good about yourself. And what shows is the inner you shining through and revealing itself through the physical.

When you start your life over at 40, don't get discouraged if it seems to take years before there's a visible sign. Look at Paula now--a chick in her late 50s whose face glows from finding love again. "It IS better the second time around," she cooed about her '04 marriage to a Savannah boat captain. They are an adorable couple.Love after 40 isn't just for the rich and famous. No, I found love after 40.

And there are many, many more?-just counting the ones I personally know?-finding love the first, second, third or whoever knows how many times around. Sometimes it takes a few tries to get it right. But the sooner you get to know the real you, the sooner you'll find the right person.

Paula calls herself "one lucky chick" but it really isn't about luck at all. It's about working hard and being your true, authentic self. Sometimes just becoming your true self takes a lot of work. Sometimes the people around you don't support that true self. That makes it even harder in expressing your true self.

But the end results are worth the effort. And you need to give yourself credit for that. Because instead of being "one lucky chick," you're really one "authentic" chick.

.Kathy Holmes writes women's fiction with romantic comedy elements while raising an awareness for Women over 40, http://www.kathyholmes.


By: Kathy Holmes

Learn Korean

Relationships But I Never Meant That - Communication is the key to any relationship.

Sexual Health Is Not a Womens Issue - It's a fact that men and women don't enjoy sex in quite the same way.

Human Life Who Would Want To Do It - Obviously life is not easy or fair.

Leadership The Decisive Factor - In every human endeavour, the type of leadership that is available often determines what measure of success or failure that is achieved.

Charming Conversation How to Make Others Eager to Chat with You - In conversations between two or more people, the more the others speak the more interesting and intelligent you?ll be.