I know. The last post was in April. I am the worst.
I am just gonna jump right in here. No foreplay as it were. I am in the midst of a mid-life revolution. I just had a birthday…. I have survived another winter! Yay me!
I am 36.
I have now literally been an adult for as long as I was a kid….
What does that mean? Well…. nothing… or everything? This is the question that I have been wrestling with lately.
When a good friend turned 40 (you know the one), she kind of spent the year with her head up her ass (I know she wont mind me saying that here because I say it to her face.) She knew it too… it hit her on her 40th and it passed on her 41st. It was remarkable (and baffling) to watch.
The thing is, it happens to a shit load of people and I honestly don’t know what the big deal is about turning 40, but it seems to be the bar at which people have a “mid-life/existential crisis”.
If I had to make a guess as to why this is a thing, I would argue that with a life expectancy of 80 you are quite literally at the peak of your potential time on earth. And that is obviously very upsetting to some people.
Is it like sleeping in till the middle of the afternoon and then being cranky that you have wasted the day?
I don’t know. People are weird.
Well, I am not quite there yet, but I see it coming round the hill and to be totally honest, I don’t want to spend a year with my head up my ass! It sounds tedious and annoying and I want nothing to do with it, so I have been spending a lot of time lately contemplating the different aspects of my life. Who am I? How do I want to live? What makes me happy? Perhaps if I can find the answers to these questions now, I can avoid the apparently inevitable cranial-rectal inversion in 4 years time.
Still with me? Good.
While trying to answer these questions I have needed to take a critical look at my life. I think this is the point at which most people freak out, and if I am totally honest with you, I did too.
For 5 fucking minutes.
Then I stopped comparing my life with others.
That’s the problem! When taking stock, don’t compare to others. For all you know, the person whose life you have deemed to be better than yours, could be an utterly horrific dumpster fire with a really good Instagram filter over the top. This is an unfortunate reality in this social media age. Everyone has the ability to essentially photo-shop their life. No one wants to appear flawed or imperfect in the eyes of their peers and so filter and edit the fuck out of their existence in order to maintain the illusion of a perfect life well lived.
So, taking a look at myself without the glare of those perfect creations in my eyes, what do I see?
I see a happily married woman.
We are coming up on our anniversary… 13 years together, 4 of them married. Is my husband perfect? No. But is he perfect for me? Yes. We share enough interests to give us things to do together. We have enough differences to maintain our individuality. We agree on the issues important to keeping a relationship healthy and what we disagree on gives us the opportunity for intelligent debate. We know how to push each others buttons and we know how to make each other laugh. We have a secret language, we have stupid pet names, we have confidence to be honest with each other at all times. We fight, we argue and we love. No filters.
I see a housewife.
That’s right. I stay at home, I cook my man his dinner, I keep the house clean and I wash his clothes. Here is where some might assume I would start to question my life…. but no. I chose this. I could go out to work and we could share the household responsibilities but I have never wanted that. We have been incredibly fortunate in that we have not needed a second income from me in order to survive.
Do we have money? Hell no. Do our bills get paid? Yes. Is it important to me to be wealthy? Not at all. It is important to me to have “enough”. Anything more than enough is a bonus, not a necessity. Does this mean I don’t have any ambition? Any dreams? Any goals? Of course it doesn’t! I just don’t have any ambitions or goals tied to the world of employment or making money, and that is perfectly fine.
So what do I want?
Maybe I should start with what I know I DON’T want. I don’t want to be one of those people that gets depressed on Sunday evening because they have to go to a job they hate on Monday. I don’t want to be a person wishing their week away to get to a Saturday night that they end up regretting Sunday morning. I don’t want to feel like I need to conform. I don’t want to suppress any part of my personality for the comfort of others. I don’t want to ever think “I am too old to do that now”.
I DON’T WANT TO BE BEIGE AND I JUST WANT TO BE HAPPY.
When I really started thinking about my life, I smiled. I AM actually happy. The “big things”, my relationships, my home… they are all exactly how I want them to be. I have a great marriage. I have a few wonderful friends. I have a constantly evolving home. I get to live a simple and relatively easy life. It may not look like someone else’s, but in reality, why would I want it too?
So here I am. Mid thirties. I have all the big pieces where I want them, and as the saying goes “the devil’s in the details”. So what are my details? What are the small things? What are the seemingly insignificant bits and pieces that are going to make me happy and prevent a total mental breakdown in 4 years?
Well…. it turns out I just want to be in my 20s again. Well…. not ACTUALLY in my 20s. That would be messy and traumatic! Nope, I mean I want to be free to enjoy all the things I did back then without feeling like “I am too old” for that or “I should have grown out of it” by now because that’s utter bollocks to be quite honest!
Why do people feel the need to put age limits on things? If you fall out of love with something, fair enough. Peoples tastes and likes change all the time! If you stop doing something you love because other people think it is juvenile or childish…. fuck that and fuck them.
We get one life and it is unbelievably short. Why not spend every possible moment doing whatever it is that makes you happy?
So if I want to spend 3 days wearing the same pyjamas, not showering, eating junk food and playing the Xbox with my husband I can. And I will. I can do whatever I want. We have spent the time and the energy cultivating and moulding our little section of the universe into the shape we want, so we should actually get to do whatever we want to do in it!
If I want get ridiculous tattoos and pierce holes in my body. I can. And I will. Its my damn body and I will do with it whatever I please. If I want to shave most of my hair off and dye it smurf blue, I will. (I did…. now its purple…. who knows what next week will bring). If I want to dress in rock band t shirts and skinny jeans or a tutu and sparkly trainers I can. And I will. I don’t want to look like you. I want to look like me. I am a complex and eclectic human being, so why would I want to look like everyone else?
So yes….. I am having a mid-life revolution. A mental overhaul. A change of government. An awakening. An enlightenment. A new world view.
And this new found attitudes name…. is FUCK IT, BE HAPPY.
And if you don’t like it… FUCK YOU, I’M HAPPY.