Earlier this week I found myself having a conversation with one of the Director’s in my office. He was telling me he suffers terribly from “middle-aged resentment”. That he’s constantly aware at all times, someone out there younger than he is, will be having the time of their life. His best days are behind him.
At the time it wasn’t something I could entirely connect with, I laughed and thought “poor sod”. Until I took a peek at his passport the other day and realised he’s actually only a couple of years older than I am.
I’m 34 this year (we all say how old we’re going to be next birthday don’t we? Never the age we’re at now) and have never thought that put me in the “middle-age” category. I always thought I was smugly past those rosy days of your twenties when you think life is spontaneous and chances are handed freely to you just by merit of your naive enthusiasm. Feel like I’m not quite in the days of my forties where I fully expect to feel like I have let myself down in not saving the human race or keeping a plant alive for more than a fortnight and then start buying shit loads of cats. Then I found out Chris Packham is 51 and I am hugely confused about where middle-age starts, and strongly suspect that actually maybe these age brackets that try to define us don’t exist anymore. Being that he looks as youthful, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as a boy scout.
I like lurking in my thirties. So my hangovers can last a couple of days and Topshop feels increasingly like its laughing at me for trying to remain in its demographic. But my boobs are exactly where they should be still (although I strongly suspect my bum may not be, but I don’t have to look at that). I still feel like I have time to ignore my ever-present nagging conscience saying “what are you going to do with your life?”, I pretend not to hear it over the Tinnitus.
We always talk about our idyllic childhoods don’t we? No one ever tags that word on to our adult years. Tragically sad really.