Realising you’re being born at forty is an odd experience. It’s not like a proper birth, where, I presume, it doesn’t cross your mind that you have to keep going or you’ll never get out.
After spending exactly 28 years trying to figure out how to fit in somewhere in society, trying to define myself somehow, and thus learn to sell myself as Something, I have now finally, quite simply, almost inadvertently, decided to stop trying and just be me.
Of course I am in a position of privilege, I am aware of that and want to make that clear for anybody who might be reading me and knowing about me might say: “Ah well yes it’s easy enough when you have a wonderful husband, three fantastic children, the best dog in the world and the two prettiest cats ever, plus a random assortment of most excellent friends AND you live in possibly the most pleasant English city, Cambridge”.
I suppose, if that’s you thinking that, you might feel similarly to how I did when I set aside yet another self-help massively popular book, Eat Pray Love, without even glancing at it, poor thing, because I thought “Ah well if I could afford to just zoom off to India for self-discovery and eat expensive inspiring food, then I’d be a happier person too”.
Of course, it was wrong of me not to even give it a chance on the basis of that assumption, especially since it was a person I actually liked who recommended it. But this is besides the point right now.
I got to this, as quite a few many people I would guess, finding that nothing that was preorganised, prewritten, or preordained, ever worked for me. You want to give me alcohol to forget my troubles? I refuse it as such. Drugs? Same. You want me to buy Xmas stuff in bloody October? I give up Xmas. You expect me to do anything? I shan’t.
It may be a childish point of view, but hey it’s worked. I am never sure of what I’ll think next. I have never really become addicted to anything. I have never had the same company for more than a few weeks, UNLESS that company knew how to be different every time. I get dreadfully bored of people, situations, expectations, jobs, dreadfully easily.
You can’t change people who decide to become boring, predictable, knowable, poor of interests and spirit. But you can always change YOU if you get bored with yourself.
Be mindful of others, but otherwise be as true to yourself as you can possibly afford to be, and bleeding well experiment with that. Life is short.
It’s the only true luxury we still possess.