The Curse of the 30's

Okay, first of all I’m going to warn you that this post may be a little depressing.  Something has been happening to me recently and I wasn’t sure whether or not to write about it but when I realised it’s something that no one ever mentions I figured ‘why not?’

When you’re in your 20’s, nearing that big three-zero, it seems like it’s a huge number and some people don’t cope too well with it. I remember watching Friends, the one where Rachel turns 30, and thinking that would be me (if you haven’t seen it, why not?). It wasn’t as it turns out and I didn’t mind turning 30, it was just another number and I entered a new phase of my life. Everyone seems to make a big deal out of turning 30, I guess it’s because it’s when we’re expected to grow up, act more like an adult. At least when you’re in your twenties you can act how you like and most people will just say it’s because you’re young. Everyone I know told me that becoming 30 was the turning point, “It’s all downhill” they said. I didn’t believe them, of course. 

To be honest I don’t think it is all downhill, I think it’s just another step in the journey. Looking back, the thing that no one mentioned is that this is the decade you realise you are mortal. That sounds kind of stupid I know but hear me out. In the last few weeks something very unnerving has started happening to me. I’ve started to think about my, my husband’s and even my children’s mortality. Everywhere I look I see something that could completely change our life or I worry that when the little one jumps off the couch all kinds of things could go wrong and he’ll end up in the hospital. I never realised before how vulnerable we are… all of us, all the time. I never thought that this would dawn on me in this decade - and no one warned me about it either, which makes it even worse.

My husband used to have to fly over to America quite a lot with work, he’d spend a week there and then come home. It never bothered me, even when he was in France for the riots and the collapse at the Charles De Gaulle Airport. Don’t get me wrong I did worry about him. He was on a plane on 9/11 heading for New York and… well let’s just say that my husband has been in areas where stuff happens. A lot. A few weeks ago he went into Nottingham in our car to a meeting which I expected him back from at about 6pm. Six o’clock came and went and you won’t believe the things that went through my mind. I was panicky, couldn’t think about anything but where he was and if he was ok. He’s been away from me for weeks at a time and this completely threw me.

I think what I’m trying to say is that turning thirty is no big deal, it’s the whole decade that is the big deal. The fact that you realise someone you know could get hurt, someone you love may well be in an accident, get diagnosed with Cancer or some other disease and there is nothing you can do about it. Life happens, death happens and you realise it’s going to happen to you too.

My philosophy now? Enjoy life. Take any opportunity you have to make new friends, take on new challenges and push yourself. Tackle problems head on, don’t ignore things that annoy you and most of all LOVE. Your husband, lover, friend… anyone. Make sure that you experience the euphoria of having someone cling to you so tight that you can’t breath, hearing them say ‘I love you’ and know they really, truly mean it. After all, that’s what life’s really about isn’t it?