Today marks two whole months of being a 30 year old. And I’m proud of myself.
I’m a bit proud because I think I’ve managed to get away with not letting on how much I hate it. But I’m mainly proud because I have successfully graduated from the School of Grief, coming to terms with the 5 stages, following the tragic loss of my twenties.
(I knew that my AS Level in Psychology would come in handy one day…)
Stage 1- Denial
I went through a brief phase of just trying to change my age (like really old people do), and thought I might stick at 28 for… well, forever actually. But it turns out when you have a big birthday, everyone knows how old you are.
Even my 5 year old clearly understands my torment and sadistically won’t let me lie about it. In fact, he felt the need to tell our next door neighbour, “Mummy is so old I have to look after her now”.
Stage 2- Anger
There’s a chance I may have a total intolerance to mild irritation. I appear to have turned into my 90 year old Grandpa when he flies off the handle for a few Battenberg crumbs on the rug.
Young people irritate me. (By the way, I would define young people as anyone below 25… No, 23.) The ridiculous clothes, the inability to do anything without having your face in your brand new iPhone that I can’t afford, the unbearable negative attitude despite the fact you have no humans reliant on you and no real responsibilities, and the incessant and totally pointless use of the word ‘literally’.
NB. Other things that anger me for no real reason: Sandi Toksvig, the unnecessary use of garlic, and my Husband.
Stage 3- Bargaining
Some aspects of turning 30 are, I suppose, not all bad. There are some things I am happy to see the back of. I will not miss sudden and unexpected breakouts of acne. However, I understand this life-changing prize must come at a price. And that price is approximately a million pounds for anti-wrinkle products, because that’s what a fear of the ageing process forces you to do when you’re 30.
Another significant compromise involves a change in your taste in TV shows (which your entire life revolves around). Gone are the days that I binge watch cool Netflix dramas and illegally download the newest Hollywood Blockbusters. These days I live for The Great British Bake Off and Emmerdale… and apparently, I also use phrases like, ‘gone are the days’.
I vividly remember spending my not-so rebellious youth taking the piss out of my Mum for her shocking taste in TV viewing, and now I find myself too watching Eggheads and shamefully, enjoying it.
Stage 4- Depression
As well as actually being old, I genuinely feel it. I have that female anxiety where my Body Clock is now very much a thing, rather than just something I’m aware of through reading mindless moaning on Mumsnet. I feel forced into making decisions I’ve been putting off for 5 years, just because I’ve had a birthday. And it’s a bit of a lose-lose situation. Do I do what I feel totally unprepared for… emotionally, physically and financially, because it might be my last chance? Or quit forever? Or risk being a Geriatric Mum?!
Stage 5- Acceptance
Over the last few years, I’ve seen nearly all my friends turn 30. And I know that the ones who were really bothered by it were those who felt they hadn’t achieved what they wanted to.
When I think back to what 18 year old me wanted when I was 30… I wanted to be married, have a great job I enjoy, have children and a loving family unit, have a lovely house, wonderful friends, and generally be happy in life.
What more could I want? I have everything I could possibly need. A few wrinkles and Sandi Toksvig is a small price to pay for what I have.