Does anyone else remember being about 18 years old (or even younger) and thinking they had the world all figured out?
Did anyone else think they were complete at that stage? “I’m an adult now and this is who I am.”
Maybe it was just me. But boy was I wrong. Now I’m in my
late 30s, I’m finally starting to realise that I’m becoming a new person all the time – that I’m not complete and that it’s never too late to become something you never thought you would be.
I think at my age it’s easy to feel a bit discouraged about your prospects – like it’s getting too late to learn something new or succeed at something you never tried before. But then I need to remind myself of how much I’ve changed since I was 18. Since then I have:
- Moved to a whole foreign country and learned to live happily in a different culture
- Built a pretty decent career-like thing that I’m not ashamed to talk about at dinner parties (in case I ever go to any).
- Grew two humans and learned how to keep them alive.
And those are just the really big things.
At the same time, a fear of failure has all too often kept me from success. I have a history of being a quitter. If anything seemed too hard – or the prospect of success too good to be true – or it seemed that failure was imminent, I would just give up while the giving up was good. It happened with just about every sport or hobby I ever tried. It also happened with a few career choices I pursued in my youth. I was going to be a star of screen or stage but I never even actually tried that.
I’ve told myself I enjoy being a jack of all trades, but really I’m afraid I can’t be the master of any of them. And fear never did me any favours (I have to remind myself when undergoing any medical procedure that fainting does not help). Strictly Ballroom had the best ever mantra:
That’s why this blogging lark has become so important to me. I’m not going to give up on this one. Some weeks it’s hard. I can’t think of anything to write, or nobody is reading what I do write. Some days, being a mum and all, I’m just so tired and I want to stare into space and drink a glass of wine. Today is one of those days.
But I’m going to write instead. Because sometimes the feelings that make me feel like sitting around doing nothing are actually put to better use by writing. I can write it all down and put it to rest.
Writing is one of the things I’ve always loved but was too scared to properly pursue – especially fiction writing. The blog is teaching me that I can write and that writing isn’t always about who is going to read it, or whether I become famous or even recognised at all.
It is also teaching me that it’s never too late to reinvent yourself. I can be a mum, a wife, a friend, a blogger, and a writer. You can finally go and climb that mountain you’ve been looking at, or take steps towards changing your career to the one you really want.
You’re never too old (or too young) or not good enough.
Have you given up on things you loved before? Is there something you always wanted to try?