In my teens … I believed that reaching the age I am now was an eternity away.

teenage life

In my twenties … life was sweet … a little out of control, but I was living it to the full.

In my thirties … I felt in control, I was still playing sport at an acceptable level and still blissfully unaware that time was passing so quickly.

Being forty didn’t faze me either … I celebrated in style, but as I raced towards forty-five, I began to slow down.  My joints ached after years worth of sport and had to concede that my body was past it.  I had hit my midlife crisis.

I didn’t feel compelled to bungee jump naked from the nearest 700ft bridge, I didn’t start taking pills and potions in a last-ditch attempt to keep a youthful facade, I started thinking about whether or not I had morphed into the person I was always meant to be and I wasn’t sure that I had.  There were still things that I needed to do in my life.

“Forty is the old age of youth; fifty the youth of old age.”

Victor Hugo

During the weeks leading up to my fiftieth birthday I started having nightmares … about being sixty … not fifty.  Waking up in a cold sweat and screaming this can’t be happening, with images of my wrinkled older self clinging to the waking fog in my head.

I don't want to be sixty

When I actually turned fifty … it didn’t bother me which was because the biological clock had something far more menacing up its sleeve … THE MENOPAUSE.  7 dewarfs of menopause

With oestrogen levels at an all time low I was concentrating on all the things I wanted to achieve before I was sixty … but life got in the way as usual.

Nothing lasts forever

My mother had a stroke, so I spent four years flying to and from the UK.  Then and all within an 8 month period my emotional shit hit the fan. I was made redundant, 2 months later my brother died, then my mother, then my aunt and one of my closest friends in between.  That was my wake up call.  Since then I’ve put my life into overdrive.  I am 2 years into the novel that I’ve always wanted to write, taken up QiGong and I breath in every sunrise and every sunset with renewed wonder.

So don’t let life pass you by, live the dream.  As Joy Baluch said, time marches on. You might not realise it when you are 18, 20 or even 30, but whatever your age, it is never too late to be the person you were always meant to be


Written by Tessa Barrie

Writer and blogger from Jersey in the Channel Islands UK who believes life is too short to be niche. 🙃 Currently working on her first novel.

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