It’s my Birthday on Friday; I’m really starting to feel old now.
I suppose I’m going to have to start growing up. This year I’m going to have to face the facts, and become an adult.
I’m going to have to admit to myself that I am no longer mid thirties. I now only have one year left until I become old enough to be my father – or something.
I will be 39 this time; somehow for me this signals the end of an era. I’m odd like that; it doesn’t seem to be the obvious birthdays that affect me, the idea of being 39 terrifies me more than being 40.
When I turned 30 I didn’t bat an eyelid, in fact I quite enjoyed that change and relished the new me, after all, my wife was pregnant with my first child, I had a lot to be excited about!
When I was 35 though, I really felt it. Suddenly I was no longer early thirties. Now I was mid thirties. What is more, that first child had been joined by a second and in the last five years I’d aged ten. I found my 35th birthday very depressing.
Now I’m going to be 39, and what have I done since being 35? Nothing. Career wise I’ve not moved up at all, just sort of turned up and sat at a desk. All I’ve done at home is trundle along being a husband or a dad. Suddenly I only have a year left of my thirties, but there are still so many things that I’d intended to do before hitting 40.
So I’m going to make a declaration.
I now accept that I will not be getting the chance to marry Sandra Bullock.
I now accept that I will not skydive out of the back of a Hercules aircraft.
I now accept that I will never look good in a convertible sports car.
I now accept that my days of wearing designer blue jeans are over.
I now accept that my days of wearing Supermarket brand cords are a here.
I now accept that I will never manage to get involved with one of those mass naked photo shoots that are popular at the moment.
I now accept that the above fact is a relief for the rest of the participants.
I now accept that my hair will never miraculously grow back.
I now accept that it’s unlikely that I will be a millionaire by the time I’m 40 after all.
I now accept that I will never be a Formula 1 driver.
I now accept that my wife’s parents were probably right about me, and John, the Doctor, is single and living back in the area again.
I now accept that I will never look good in a nightclub.
I do not accept that this whole writing project is a waste of time!
I’m 10 months into it and have truly learned so much its crazy, I really can see a difference in my writing, I’ve learned a lot and I know full well that I can learn more. I love writing and really want to keep doing it. Have I earned a massive following? No. Have I earned anything? No.
But guess what, there are some people who read what I write, and not just family. There are some other writers who read it as well, and keep coming back. Writers who don’t need to do this because their own blogs are far more successful and better written than mine. Writers who know full well that a comment on my blog won’t earn them any extra readers, but who comment any way. How good is that? There are some people reading this who aren’t even writers, but who just come and read from time to time.
Perhaps there aren’t many, but there are some – and that just amazes me.
I may never write that book, or be anything like the success that I am in my dreams but I will keep writing, I’m sure of this. And so I am making this declaration.
BEFORE I AM 40 –
I will write something that is published elsewhere. I will get enough courage and self belief together to ignore the countless rejections that will no doubt come before somebody, somewhere, lets me in.
I may or may not get paid for it, but I will write for someone else.
It may be a local paper or magazine, it may be an online publication or even as a guest writer on someone else’s blog (but not one where inclusion is automatic, I write on Helium already but as I recall they were happy to include my posts as long as I was happy to pay £5).
If I am wrong on this, and I never manage to get over the hurdle of self doubt that stops me sending off articles, then … then …
BEFORE I AM 50 ….