21 May The New Sixteen
At the time of writing this I am two weeks away from turning The Big Four Oh. At the time of you reading this however I am a mere five days away from turning forty. Five days away from a life changing birthday.
Well, it doesn’t have to be life changing of course, but I’ve decided to make it life changing. I have decided to jump off the really high, extremely comfortable cliff I’ve been perched on for the past few years and plunge, feet first, into the *fingers crossed* crystal clear turquoise waters before me. I mean, they’re going to be crystal clear beautifully warm waters right? It’s going to be an easy ride that I’m embarking on, surely? Why wouldn’t it be? I’m leaving a secure job I’ve been in for the past seven and a half years, I’m heading off on a 6 week American road trip that is three quarters planned, I’m turning forty and I have no job to come back to. Everything’s going to fine, right?
I won’t lie. I didn’t imagine I would be where I am at forty. When I was eighteen, I knew, with so much certainty, that by the time I was forty I would be a successful actress, living in Hollywood, married and with three kids. I knew it with absolutely no doubts whatsoever. I can’t tell you when that faded but it did. Breakups and knock backs contributed to the losing of that particular dream along with hindsight and the realisation that the course of life little girls have been told for centuries isn’t for everyone. The shock of discovering I was only going to be distinctly average in life and the inevitable discovery that I am a naturally lazy person have also added to me being absolutely no where near where I dreamt of being by my 40th birthday.
I remember My Mother around the age of forty. Her forty was nothing like my impending forty. Around that age she was a proper grown up who had lost a parent at a young age, lived in three different countries, was married, had three kids as well as a career. At thirty nine and 11/12th I still feel fifteen. I know that might seem like an exaggeration but at fifteen I was also single, distinctly average and a daydreamer who slept a lot. I desperately wanted a life that was so far out of my reach and 25 years later~ Guess what? I am back at square one.
Live in the moment those smug, well developed people with houses and careers say. Well, I can tell you that I tried it. I did a very grown up thing and realised I lived in the past a lot and that was super unhealthy so I decided to try living in the moment. Day to Day. Having fun, painting my toenails and eating a whole wedge of Brie in one setting. The trouble with living in the moment though is that one day you raise your head momentarily and realise you’re about to be forty, have no transferrable, employable skills, you don’t own any property, your womb is empty and there’s no one wanting to take a close look at your vagina on a regular basis.
So, what do we do about this state of affairs people? How do we stop ourselves from heading back to bed with the weight of it all? What can be done to move forward and try and make it to feeling slightly older than fifteen. Sixteen perhaps?
Well my answer is to behave like my sixteen year old self. At 16 I moved to a different country, away from my family and went to a brand new, enormous school. I was finally free of the nest and I started a new life. I chopped off all my hair, gained a different style and lived out my dream. I reckon I can do that again. I can move away from feeling fifteen and make it to sixteen only now with much better teeth and hair and I reckon my personality is far superior. It has to be. I know more, I have more experiences and I have a head on my shoulders that is admittedly full of a lot of crap and contradictions but also a lot of good stuff. Really good stuff. Stuff about movies and comedy and sex and friendship and style and travel…..All I need from that sixteen year old is her guts and determination and her thirst for something new.
I can do this. Bring on my life changing birthday and let the next chapter begin…..
Ps. Just want to say that if anyone would like to give me a job then that would really help the start of this next chapter. I’m very organised and I’m great with people when they have manners. Many Thanks. My email is on the contact page of my website.