It's finally here. My 30th birthday. But I’m not going to tear my hair out and refuse to come out from under the bed.
I turned thirty yesterday and I feel older. Not old. Just older. What’s the difference? Well.
When you mention Fireball XL5 to someone and they look blankly at you and you realise they were born in the 1990s – that’s when you feel old. So, so old. When you see the same someone sing a Justin Bieber song with an expression you reserve for The Doors, you feel older. And so very grateful for it.
I’m feeling older in that sense. And no, I’m not going to pretend that there is no flip-side to hitting the big three-oh.
Being 30 means that I can no longer drink vodka the whole night without getting a hangover. It also means that if I raid the buffet the way I like to, it takes more than one session at the gym to get the stomach flat again.
It also means coming to terms with the fact, that my dream of being a published author by 30 is going to be pushed to a more realistic deadline.
And now that marriage has been ticked off the list, it means the world is looking at me with shining eyes, hoping I’ll give it a brand-new human who has some of my genes.
But somehow, as I savour my expensive Scotch and eat 3-course meals at fancy restaurants, as I wear clothes that make me look good without exposing my mid-riff, as I hit the gym to stay healthy instead of skinny, as I revel in my birthday gifts (grown-up ones like jewellery and fun ones like the Batman poster and the Scrabble set and that dress I’d never have bought for myself), as I get recognised for being “internet-famous” if not a published author, as I go home every evening to a wonderful husband instead of a silent telephone, I realise that having spent the last 30 years trying to “get somewhere in life”, I’m sort of, kind of, almost, halfway there.
It begins to dawn on me that it’s now officially time to forget all the little age-quibbles and start enjoying that.
And that is the real upside of being thirty.