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And So This is 40, and What Have I Done?

I woke up yesterday morning and the weirdest thing happened. I was 40. How did that happen so quickly? One day I was dancing at secret raves and generally living life without a care in the world and the next I’m married, 2 kids, a grown up house, proper job and a full 40 years behind me. Excuse me if you’re easily offended, but holy shit.

I have a clear memory of being about 16, soon after my mother died, imagining my life at 40. I think I thought I’d have a rather grown up job (tick), I seem to remember thinking I’d have children (tick) although in my 16 year old mind they would be older than they are. I guess I spent too many years living a fancy free life to have them any earlier. I certainly remember promising myself I would never forget my mother and that on my 40th birthday, if I had survived (well I was 16 and with that comes a barrel load of drama) I’d say ‘well done Holly, you’re okay’.

What would I say now to my 16 year old self?

- Always follow your instinct, it rarely lets you down. On the occasions you don’t things generally go a bit awry . You will come to realise this.
- Don’t dye your hair blonde. It will look awful and will take years to go back to its normal colour

Evidence that I should never dye my hair blonde.

Evidence that I should never dye my hair blonde.

- You do not have a genetic ability to stay in shape beyond your 22nd birthday. Do some exercise.

I was the best runner at school, shame I waited till my 30's to take it up again

I was the best runner at school, shame I waited till my 30′s to take it up again

- Count to 10 before you lose it. If you follow this advice you will be a better person than you actually are (figure that out)

- Figure out your priorities and stick with them

- Smile more

- Save more

- If something’s not working, ditch it. Life’s too short to keep flogging dead horses (and who wants a yard of dead animals anyway? Weird expression).

- You will always take on more than you can do. Just get used to it and don’t try and change it. It’s who you are.

- Have a day every now and then when you switch off all devices. Phone, blackberry, TV, laptop. Even before you have children you should do this.

- Make time for your friends. They are the glue that hold you together.

So all in all it’s not bad to be 40. I’m mostly where I hoped I’d be, maybe sometimes it’s a bit rough around the edges (the 5.30am starts are fairly trying), if I stop spinning the plates they tend to crash in dramatic fashion, but I get by and I have some great, great friends both new and old and I have the best family anyone could ever wish for.

Thank you to you all for getting me here.

(That is the last smug post you will get from me. Promise.)

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Comments

  1. Belated happy birthday!! Fab post x

  2. happy birthday mrs, sorry I missed the lunch x

  3. Ah, I’m en route to 40 too, and wonder everyday how this grownup life came to be mine! Happy belated birthday. One thing I can say is that 40 seems to look a whole lot better than when I was 16 thinking it would never arrive!

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