Goodbye to All That

8 October 2014

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So, here it is. The last day of my thirties.

I’ve been completely dreading this, which is, I know, just a trifle VAIN of me but forty just seems like such a HUGE number plus when I was growing up, women in their forties were, well, old and I just don’t feel ready to be properly grown up. Not yet anyway. I mean, there’s still loads of stuff that I want to do and places that I want to see!

It’s all changed now though – women in their forties aren’t expected to wear beige, don sensible shoes and cut their hair off. They’re not compelled to do the allegedly decent thing and vanish into the background, quietly accepting that their days of being interesting, vibrant and attractive are over and that from now on they are more or less invisible. Thankfully, those days are in the past. I mean, who in their right mind would tell the likes of Kate Moss that they shouldn’t be wearing mini skirts and swishing long hair around and being fanciable? Not me, that’s for sure. And nor should anyone else.

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Oh dear, here I am on my birthday last year wearing my birthday tiara!

So yes, I’m saying goodbye to my thirties with mixed feelings. I mean, it’s older but it’s not really THAT old, is it? And really, I should be GRATEFUL to have survived for so long – after all, if nothing else, this blog ought to serve as a melancholy reminder of how short and uncertain life was for women in the past. I should imagine that rather a lot of the ladies that I have written about over the years would be punching the air with jubilant glee to have got out of their thirties in one piece – after all, all too many of them were not so fortunate.

My thirties were astonishing though. I’ll be honest that I didn’t have tremendously high expectations of them after the misery filled washout that was my teens and twenties, but they turned out to be pretty amazing – I got married, had two children, acquired a mortgage, started this blog, wrote five and a half books and became self employed plus a whole bunch of other stuff like getting cats and a tattoo and doing some amazing things. Yes, there were low points (isn’t there always?) but overall it was a good ten years and is certainly the decade that I think has done the most to shape and enhance me as a person. I’m definitely not even slightly like the person I was ten years ago and that is very much a GOOD thing as I was AWFUL. When I turned thirty, I was nervous, damaged and miserable but I can honestly say that right now, I am far more confident and keenly aware of my strengths and weaknesses than I have ever been before and honestly feel like I could do ANYTHING. Possibly this is a feeling that would have served me better during my feckless, unsuccessful, anxious twenties but never mind, it’s all good now.

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So with that in mind, I think that, inevitable wibbles aside, I’m going to look forward to my forties. I’m certainly very keen to see what the next ten years bring and am already bubbling over with plans for books, art projects, new things to learn and ways to move this blog forward. It’s actually really exciting and I finally feel strong, confident and fearless enough to actually DO it.

Although, as I was born at five to midnight on the tenth of October, I suppose that means that TECHNICALLY I’m thirty nine for all of tomorrow too, right? RIGHT?

Onwards!

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Set against the infamous Jack the Ripper murders of autumn 1888 and based on the author’s own family history, From Whitechapel is a dark and sumptuous tale of bittersweet love, friendship, loss and redemption and is available NOW from Amazon UK, Amazon US and Burning Eye.

‘Frothy, light hearted, gorgeous. The perfect summer read.’ Minette, my young adult novel of 17th century posh doom and intrigue is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US and is CHEAP AS CHIPS as we like to say in dear old Blighty.

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