As a young woman, in her mid to late… OK, almost 30’s, I often look back on my last decade with fondness, laughter, appreciation… additionally sheer disbelief that I am now 28 years of age. Where has the time gone? What is this age that has been bestowed upon me? What am I even DOING in life? At this present moment, my 10-year-old self would probably high 5 current me in the face for not being where I thought I would. I recall it so vividly. Standing in P6 class circa 1996, a tartan pleated ruby skirt accompanied by a mustard jumper and my Clarks Mary jane’s shining like a new penny, I was alone at the back of the classroom day-dreaming. We had been making paper mache that day. I think that amidst staring at an immeasurable accumulation of news papers past and present and looking over my shoulder in fear that the class clown slapped my face with wet paste again, I got to thinking about my future. I’ll have a couple of kids. A pool. One of those beetles. My husband who looks super pretty, will of course be a billionaire and I will obviously be living in a Malibu beach house that is filled with my shoes and Polly pockets. When I’m 20, I’ll become an astronaut, a dog whisperer or a journalist for my local courier paper (I hailed from Armadale, that was a big deal for me…) or someone who knows exactly what they want in life.
The truth is, I still don’t know where I want to be or what exactly I want to do. One thing I know is, that’s actually FINE. Do we have to conform to society and feel like there’s something wrong with us if we are still single, still not got that house we thought we would own, not having that Aga cooker that you once dreamed about cooking your Sunday roast in? I remember my freak out well when I returned from travelling a few years back. I was very fortunate to go travelling to Australia and Asia 4 years ago. I was at the supreme age of 24 when I left Glasgow airport on my own, backpack round my shoulders and clearly not enough money in my bank account – but that feeling was incredible. I knew I always wanted to travel from a very young age and it’s been the only time in my life I knew I really wanted to be somewhere or knew exactly what I wanted to do. Mum always drummed it into my head (thanks mum!) and I actually got the chance to follow my dream. I felt like my time in Australia was the best few years imaginable new friends, places, food, drinks, cultures… It changed me forever. I have still got an uncontrollable wanderlust that makes me think about going back to work and live abroad every day. Damn those itchy feet. After an amazing few years away from all of lives sometimes tedious realities, it came to an end and I flew back home one Christmas to surprise my parents. That’s when I really started thinking about what I was doing. This is where it gets serious. I need to work? Say whaaaat?! The majority of my close friends were married, or about to get married. I found myself becoming single just before the summer. Stressing about where to go, what to do, I decided to pick up sticks, move out my mum and dad’s and head to Scotland’s capital – home to beautiful people, bars, scenery, a castle and captivating cobbled streets. My love for Edinburgh was reborn and boy, did we get on just swell.
I was out a hell’uva lot, probably not really facing the facts about my direction in life, enjoying my newly single sense of freedom, having the girls round for a cuppa and accidentally consuming a bottle of wine instead. At the time, I’m pretty sure my mum thought I was a verging alcoholic (3 glasses of wine would raise an eyebrow so I took it with a pinch of salt and a side of tequila) and my dad maybe thought I was having a pre-mid life crisis. There was a lot of Vespa’s and pension discussions to be fair on him. I was enjoying my new-found sense of freedom and independence. But I started over thinking everything. Will I be alone forever? How can I afford a deposit? If I eat nutella everyday will I turn into a hazelnut? My inner 10-year-old was taunting me – big time. There was some mornings I would look at my bleary eyed self in the mirror and ask myself ‘Why don’t you have your life together?’ I was putting things off. I’ll do it tomorrow. Maybe next week. My middle name was procrastinator. What should I be doing?
One day, I recall going to Starbucks for my post work latte, taking my book with (Bridget Jones – The edge of reason, obviously!) and finding my usual seat on the balcony where I can switch off, sit in silence, just have my own thoughts swirling around like the caramel syrup in my coffee before jumping on my train home. Two girls, in their early 30’s I guessed, were beside me chatting over the background noise and the hushed tones of Bon Iver. I heard one of them talking about something being ‘lost’ and my ears picked up. I had just managed to lose not one, but two MAC lipsticks over a couple of weekends and felt an overwhelming desire to find out what item she had lost at sea in aid to make myself feel better. Phew, least I’m not the only one that manages to lose stuff ALL THE TIME. As I sipped at my caramel froth, I tuned in a little more, sure not to look completely obvious. Before long, I realised that this woman in the beautiful tan mac and immaculate blow dry actually hadn’t lost an item. Or a MAC lipstick for that matter. She was in fact, lost. Not in a directional sense that I often do when I’m driving around Edinburgh in the dark, but in the sense that she was unsure what she was doing in life. It started me thinking, no one has it all worked out, do they? Can we really worry too much about the stuff that’s not happened yet? Sometimes, you maybe need to embrace everything life throws at you and appreciate what you have right now instead of worrying about what the future holds and really live in the moment. That minute, the worry of my post weekend antics fuelled by too many pornstar martinis faded. Everything is uncertain, but that’s what makes it an adventure, right? As I folded over on my new chapter in my book and finished off my coffee, I sat back against my chair and smiled. Phew, least I’m not the only one that doesn’t have it ‘all figured out’. Then, to my complete joy, a pigeon decided to take a shit on my new black Topshop ankle boots.
After my realising that I had to just really do what I loved, no matter what or where or how daunting starting something new might seem, I decided I was going to start a blog. I thought about the things that made me happy; my friends, family, music, gin, food, fashion, Ryan Gosling, gin… all the good stuff you know? It’s a brand new adventure for me and I know it will make me put myself out there and do something I really enjoy. Sometimes, you just need to step outside your comfort zone and do something new – try speed dating, go for that hair chop, wear your pj’s round to the local shop on Sunday morning if you really feel like it. I decided to stop worrying about the future and make a bucket list of things I wanted to achieve. Blogging was one of them… and here we are. So, while I’m living life in the moment, taking the bull by the horns, holding the world (or a tub of Ben & Jerry’s chocolate fudge brownie) in the palm of my hands… I will have the pleasure in sharing it with you guys. I reckon 10-year-old me would now totally fist bump current me for doing something I love.