It’s funny how your age starts to catch up with you; the best symptom must be when someone asks you how old you are and you either get it wrong or take so long to think about it that you look like you’re lying. I don’t think about how old everyone else is – generally I just reckon most people are about my age unless obviously they aren’t. Another sign is when the person staring back at you from photos looks mostly like you but seems to have a few more laughter lines than you thought you were blessed with – I think it was Victoria Wood who said, “Nothing is that funny.” Mostly I breeze along more concerned with how I feel in my body rather than how my face looks, blissfully convinced I’ve remained 24. Sometimes I catch sight of myself and notice how tired I appear, but optimism lies to me that this is just a blip. Are you only as old as you act or as you feel? I wonder what I look like to other people – what do they see when they look at me at the gym, on the school run? A frazzled, mom-cliche in a striped top, jeggings and uggs?
In a lot of ways I feel as though I’m still at school, playing at adulting, parenthood and someone is definitely going to catch me out sooner than later. Remember when someone of mortgage-age seemed so decrepit? Now that dim cynical view has been replaced with an awe of those who have or are close to paying theirs off. I’m now closer to 40 than 30 as someone recently pointed out. I have some life skills, I can even fold a fitted sheet; I don’t, but I could if I wanted to. Am I what other people see or am I what I think I look like? Does it even matter really? I know how I feel. I have moments of looking round at my little unit with sheer appreciation and joy – interspersed as any normal human with moments of frustration and low times – I have a lot to be thankful for and I very much am. Other times, however, botox seems like a seriously viable option for those laughter lines. Denial might be cheaper though.