Tuesday, 4 August 2009

It's all downhill from here

You know how you never feel as old as you actually are? We live in a pleasant state of denial and it is only the occasional thing that makes us realise time is travelling faster than we noticed. The other day a friend pointed out that we had known each other for twenty two years. This seemed like a shockingly long time. Surely I couldn't have known somebody I only met in the sixth form for that long? But the maths was incontrevertible. We had been friends for over two decades. This was alarming. I must be getting old if I can have known someone for that long. However, nobody else would know my shameful secret. Surely I could carry on living in denial and pretending that I am only just out of my twenties? NO growing old for me!

But recently I have been kicked out of my state of denial with a resounding and painful thud. How can this be? I hear you cry. I want to lie, to tell you anything else but this but I must be brave. I must confess. Deep breath. Here goes. I am starting to go grey. (see how I put that in bold, not grey - it's all part of the denial process). It is the start of a slippery slope. There is no going back from here.

Last time I went to the hairdressers she kindly offered 'to pull out the grey hairs' before announcing that 'there were too many and she didn't have time'. What?? I'm young. I'm full of the joys of youth. Being 20 isn't that long ago. But it is. It's nearly twenty years ago. 40 is approaching like an out of control train and there is no avoiding that after that the next big birthday is FIFTY.

I don't know when this happened. I have been living in denial for the last few years but these evil grey hairs have made me face the horrible truth. I'm getting older. My youth is a memory and one that I can't revisit on a whim. Soon, I can say that I am 'middle aged'. I should probably be saying it now. I don't want to be middle aged though. I want to be anything but middle aged.

But the fates are out to prove to me that old age is all that lies ahead of me. Yesterday the small son of a friend, one who had announced he was going to marry me when he grew up, rescinded his offer on the basis that I would be too old and maybe dead when he grew up. He has obviously seen the grey hairs and rethought his plans. I'm devastated.

I am going online to look for a zimmer frame and may have to trade the loyal hound in for a posse of cats and some knitting.

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