Desperate to be seen as the grown up I so clearly was I imagined my twenties to be glossy and full of romantic meetings like I'd seen on this programme, Sex and the City. Played on mute, one eye on the door just in case mum tried to come in and wanted to give me a sex talk or worse still someone from school found out and called me a lezzo (the worst of all secondary school labels, remember?) I wanted out of provincial living where everyone knew what
everyone I was doing. I wanted bright city lights, a bright
city flat and a decent Selfridges to supermarket carrier bag ratio. I'd wear
high heels, cook up a storm, I'd be dancing on the so called glass ceiling
before 25 and then finally accept that marriage proposal and have some babies.
That’s how this happens, right?
University came and went, I bought a Britta filter, I made cleaning rotas, I moved in with the boy and started an internal checklist. Steady collection of flat pack furniture. Check. Family birthdays where we're both invited. Check. Mutual friends, invites to the weddings of mutual friends. Check. Check. Duvet sets, shared coat hangers, a Sunday laundry routine. I'd just graduated and sat waiting, drumming my fingers for adulthood to just happen. I became more and more serious. Work was important, our future was important, going out on a Friday and not coming home was not how it was meant to be. In reality I was planning and buying media space, hardly brain surgery, and I now realise I was lonely not desperate for him to sit in with a Horlicks and a jigsaw every weekend. Constantly pushing for an answer, where is this going?
Once he got a peek at my blog and a post called "ring wish list" in my defence it was based on the Marc Jacobs dove rings but no amount of reassurance got that across. Doomed. The break up was documented well enough here, I moved into town and rebuilt my entire life. New flat, new job, new sunny outlook. (When I wasn't crying into that second bottle of wine that is, refreshing his Facebook page every minute, wet mascara pouring down my face and collecting in a pool in my collar bone. I lost weight, #winning)
Living on my own, throwing myself into work. Where's that checklist now? Last week I dropped in on a bra event at Tezenis, every item in store for a cut price for one day only. Brilliant. I walked out with armfuls of super identical and super sensible white bras - and a single baby pink one which, if you squint, looks suspiciously white and is just as sensible. No buttons, no boost up and no blushes necessary. Poured out onto my bed next to the Wang handbag and a packet of Meadham Kirchhoff nail wraps that will forever stay in said packet (since when am I ever going to want to use va-jay-jay themed nail art in real life?) I had to confirm that this pile of sensible smalls was, and is,
And maybe I'm actually ok with this. So what if I spend my last ten pounds on Tatler and fake tan. So what if I'm not going to settle down any time soon. I drink far too much on nights out, listen to the Wanted on Spotify (minimised window, obvs) wear dresses Zooey D herself would applaud, every few months I debate shorter extensions and yet I still opt for mermaid hair.
I've stopped stressing, searching for someone to tell me "Gosh aren't you adult" Call me, don't call me I won't be sitting up. The laundry hasn't been done? I won't be worrying. When my greatest stress is finding that bikini that will stay in place and make my tits look fantastic when I go away next month I think we've turned a corner. Youngest in the team? I'm the youngest in the agency, people roll their eyes when I talk I can't be sure many think I'm very good at my job but that could just be my paranoia. Childish or what. Sometimes I spend entire Saturdays in bed, not achieving not full filling anything. I don't save, I don't make plans further than the weekend.
And yes. I think I can live with that.