Embracing middle age

I’m going to tell you a secret. I have always been middle aged.

While there are many ways to gauge your age – chronologically, with one of those Real Age questionnaires, or even with how old you feel when you go to a night club – there’s your own internal clock that ticks along until one day it finally stops.

I don’t mean death. I mean the age at which you feel, yes, this is me.

I am about to turn 40 and I have just landed.

Goodbye Port-a-loos at festivals and gut-churning hangovers. Farewell high heels and knickers that feel more like sexual assault than a harmless undergarment.

Hello BBC dramas, gardening and weekend papers!

People complain about getting older – pain in the joints, padding on the belly – but surely that’s compensated for with increased empathy and a bigger wine budget.

I was an intolerable jerk when I was younger; blundering around offending people and blithely making life-altering decisions without a second thought.

I am still a complete idiot but hopefully not quite as obnoxious. Life has a way of angle grinding off those rough edges and rewarding you with friends and family who stand by you, even at your worst.

In middle age, there is a sense of settling. Not settling down – more like sediment settling in water. Things have become clearer, calmer and deeper.

And with that comes the relief of looking at yourself and thinking, ‘You’re OK’.

And I finally am.

2 comments on “Embracing middle age

  1. I know what you mean, Em – I remember writing in my diary as a teenage that I felt like a 40-year-old trapped inside a 15-year-old’s body. I would quite like to have that youth and energy back now! At least it goes gradually, so if you’re having fun you don’t notice 😉 x

  2. I’m in the same boat as you this year 😉 Thanks for your honest blog. Still unsure how I feel about the number – it doesn’t reflect me lol. But I do firmly believe age is a state of mind and we shouldn’t be ruled by what we are ‘supposed’ to be doing at any age. We have many options now. I agree with you, it’s about embracing what’s right for you personally, and continuing to make all moments count. x

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