I’m turning 30 next week.I’m supposed to write something. About how much I’ve learned and how grown up I am and how I’m all scared of getting old. Or something. I have no infinite wisdom for you. Getting older doesn’t even matter. Right now, it’s just something on the calendar that I have to get through in order to carry on with everything else. I’m not sad or ungrateful. I’m just really, really focused right now. I’m like that cartoon dog that catches a scent… and his tail goes all pointy and he ignores everyone else. Which cartoon was that? Was it Pluto? No I’m sure it wasn’t Pluto.
I am just so focused right now. I don’t mind putting the work in (I publicly enjoy on it) because it’s for ME and there’s something quite liberating and excruciating about all of it… All these little projects that are happening right at once this very minute. My agency, Graeme’s company, travel assignments, writing, publishing. The BOYS – my goodness they’re at the absolute best age right now. I would give anything for a pause button. We got a puppy, the new house, running – It’s busy. Sometimes there is shouting. Sometimes there is fighting. Very little sleep, lots of celebratory drinks, laughing, freaking out… it’s such a rush. Oh man I’m working on something right now that I am so freakin excited about I could just vomit. Don’t laugh – I do vomit when I get stressed. It’s not nice to laugh at people who vomit.
Having a birthday is so far off the radar that it may as well not happen. I’m sure I’ll get excited later. We’re going away this weekend, and doing something really cool next week. But you know, I feel like I have my ducks in a (good enough) row for a 30 year old. With two gorgeous, healthy kids, a husband who genuinely loves me. My own business, a family I would fight dragons for. A new (perfect) house that we’re moving in to soon. Life-long friends so wonderful that you’d wish they were yours. Sitting here right now, there is very little more that I want. Almost nothing. Sitting here right now, I am grateful beyond measure for everyone and everything that I have.
I have no gaps to fill, no boxes to tick. Everything from here on out is the chocolate sprinkles and sweet baby cherries on top of it all. Maintaining, appreciating and living right inside of everything that we’ve built and planned for ourselves to date. I intend to grow and nourish it a little bit more. I look forward to everything, but I’m dreading so much too.
As I grow older, so do my parents. Living a life without them is something I can’t even comprehend. My dad and I are 30 years apart so as I celebrate my 30th, it’s his 60th. With my 40th, is his 70th. and so on. My mom means absolutely everything to me. Not having her available on chat would gut me irreversibly. Graeme and I both have a lot of loss ahead that I fear we won’t even recover from. I know I won’t.
So as I ‘celebrate’ getting older and pushing the clock forward I become acutely aware of those around me getting older too. As I try calculate how many years I have left with my parents, and then my own children…? Well, that’s just not enough. I only had 3 years with my biological father and 17 years with my late brother. Maybe I’m worried about aging for all the wrong reasons. Losing Graeme… oh man I would pull a Romeo on this family so fast. I couldn’t give a rabbit’s tush about wrinkles and saggy boobs. Go every direction you want, but don’t take my family away from me.
So that’s all I really see with these milestones. No amount of late nights, money, promises, dream houses or completed projects is going to make the clock stop. Not even for a second. No matter how much you pay it, beg it, give it… That clock doesn’t stop for anyone. At the end of it, none of us are special or immortal. No matter who you are and what you achieve, you will end up in a big wooden box or in a vase – whichever way you do it. Isn’t that just… devastating?
Maybe I’ll eat cake. I’ll drink some champagne. I’ll spend some time with some of my favourite people and those who I love and cherish most. I’ll be 30 and nothing will change, except that I can never be 29 again. So right now I AM focused. I’m trying to build something tall and strong. So strong that it will last for good. And once it’s standing I’ll be able to leave it, stop holding it up; maintain it. And when that happens, I’ll have all this time with the people I love. All this time to breathe them in, and live together. But I won’t stop until it’s up. Every bleeding, celebratory block is noted.
Next week I’ll be 30, and we’ll all get older together – whatever your age might be. So happy birthday to all of us, whether it’s happy or not. Enjoy every glorious moment of being alive, every single damn day. To all of us.