Frivolous At Forty

I found her in Ibiza…

So it turns out I can still party. Really REALLY party. I’m not talking about a simple drunken mum wiggle at a wedding, more out-dancing the Millennials. It was a revelation.

You see the big 40 is descending on me. Rapidly. T-minus 30 days to be exact. I know, I know – it’s just a number, nothing much is going to change. I’m not going to suddenly wake up with a full on granny beard and false teeth…BUT I have been feeling anxious about it. For I’ve been noticing the slight wrinkles appearing on my neck, the cheeky white wiry hairs and oh, the crepey eyelids (that was a surprise). My forehead has a permanent frown and I have a miserable resting face, so much so that people are always telling me to ‘cheer up love’. There’s no getting away from it. Aging is setting in.

As well as the vanity side of things I’ve always assumed that by the time I’d reached 40 I’d have my s%#t together. That I’d finally be all grown up. But here I am still on shaky ground; disastrous with my finances and hankering after the elusive perfect career but not having the energy to do anything about it. I panic that soon it’s going to be too late, that I’ll always be hovering in this dream-like state.

Last weekend though I put all this twittering aside and fully embraced a few days of the old me. Ironically I think I was even wilder than the younger old me. Maybe it is the fact that I know these moments are so rare that I have to soak them up. To breathe them in. With three little boys plus a hectic job my days usually revolve around wiping bums while taking conf calls, so I made a pact with myself to just go for it. 100%.

And I did. There I found myself hanging out in a pool party VIP area, quaffing eye-wateringly expensive vodka and leading the masses with my mum moves. The next night I was raving on a fully made up bed in the middle of the dancefloor, listening to an opera singing drag queen and belting out Whitney Houston numbers in a ball-pit bath. Literally SO far removed from my usual existence I think I may have dreamt it all!

Then just like that I was back home again. Back to my normality, albeit slightly dazed having left half of my brain cells on the island. My head and body feeling completely detached from one another. Yet so happy to have proved to myself that I can still be me, not just mum-me, working-me, sensible-me. I remembered the fun, frivolous me.

Of course I was desperate to have some squeezes and to kiss my little one’s downy blonde hair, but the aching stomach muscles and silly photos are a reminder of the importance of lovely friends and an occasional dose of pure escapism. For now though I’ll hang up the yellow dress and contain the wavy arms (sob). The mum hat is well and truly back in place. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.

The birthday will arrive next month but I’m feeling okay about it right now. In fact I might actually be looking forward to what my next decade might bring. I’m starting to care less about what others think and feeling more comfortable with myself. My thirties were mainly spent breeding…I’m hoping my forties will be about having fun with my incredible family, while having a bit more me-time squeezed in there too.

Sod the lines and squidgy bits. Bring it on. Whoop..that’s the wavy arm trying to escape again.

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