When I was 35

Which is not a meme, unless anyone wants it to be, but which I got from Charlotte.

When I was 35, I was almost two years’ married and I thought it was forever. Now I don’t believe in forever, I don’t believe love lasts and I’m all out of willingness to make the effort. And that’s ok.

When I was 35, I’d been living in the US for two years and I was still homesick. Now I’m back in England, which is where I belong. Which is not to say I’ll stay here, but I’ll always come home.

When I was 35, although I had heard of blogging, I didn’t get it. Now I’ve been blogging for four years, and I can’t imagine not doing so.

When I was 35, I was still working in editorial, still trafficking with content, still occasionally even dealing with authors and books. Now I work on business process and workflows for digital publishing and I have a professional qualification in project management.

When I was 35, I was struggling to maintain any kind of regular gym attendance. Now, things are much the same. And thus it will ever be!

When I was 35, I had never lived on my own. Now I’ve been almost 8 months in my flat and I have learned that my comfortable solitude is something to cherish and protect.

When I was 35, I had very short hair and none of it was grey. Now, it’s heading towards shoulder length, and the other day I noticed that there was a fair sprinkling of silver a little hidden at the temples. By the time the current dye job finally washes out, I suspect there’ll be more. That’s ok, too.

When I was 35, I was living without a lot of books because I’d left them in England. Now, I’m living without a lot of books because they’re still in the US.

When I was 35, I thought my life was on a path that was marked for many years to come, and it was a good one. Now I know that I know nothing; that I have no idea what’s round the corner, so whatever plans, hopes, dreams I have are fragile things that can be knocked awry by an indifferent fate. All that means is that I have to be ready to turn on a dime. In the meantime, wherever I’ve been and whatever has changed, some of the same things are still as important to me as they have been for years. They are the fulcrum around which life may pivot, and they provide some consistency at the core: friends, books, walking, time to cook and bake, quiet domesticity, films, a good bottle of wine in good company. In such is ample sufficiency, I think.


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I've run out of books. Again.

5 thoughts on “When I was 35”

  1. Finding and cherishing those things that are the quiet fulcrum of our lives is the most important thing that we can do. Look after yourself.

  2. You mean you aren’t 35 anymore? I thought you were. And “such is ample sufficiency” indeed. I just wish an ocean didn’t divide us, so we could more easily enjoy a “good bottle of wine in good company” (I mean, your company is good. Can’t vouch for mine), and watching films together.

  3. Charlotte – it all comes down to the simple stuff, doesn’t it?
    Annie – thank you. I will.
    Emily – Alas, 35 is long gone. I will vouch for your company, damn that pesky ocean!
    Derek – 🙂

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