Wednesday, 3 August 2011

A Fear of Being Ordinary or a Mid-Life Crisis?

In about two weeks time, two of my best friends are leaving the UK, for up to two years to teach abroad. One of them is moving to Dubai and the other is jetting off to Qatar. Both are about to embark on a Middle Eastern adventure of who-knows-what, living in a lovely hot climate and experiencing a new and mysterious culture.

Of course I am pleased for them, I am genuinely excited for them both. It's a wonderful opportunity to be able to take one of the ultimate transferable skills - the ability to teach - with them to pastures new. But I have to say it's made me feel like I am suddenly going through my midlife crisis, at the age of 31!

It's not even that I am jealous as such. The Middle East is probably not where I would choose to live, I think for me it would be New York or Barcelona, but that's not to say I am not looking forward to visiting them both and seeing where they have set up home. It's just that it's made me think - is this it?

Now a little bit of context - I have a wonderful, gorgeous boyfriend of eight years, whom I love very much. I have wonderful friends who make me laugh out loud. I take fabulous holidays. I own my own flat in London. I have a good job, in fact a very good job, which allows me to live comfortably and even splash out on overpriced trainers from time to time, and I actually enjoy what I do!

We plan to adopt in the next few years, the grumpy one and I, which will be amazing, life-changing and enriching -  and get a couple of dogs - mine will be a British Bulldog called Frank - and move to a lovely Victorian house in my favourite part of London (Brixton) with a beautiful garden where I can chill on a summers evening, after a long day at work, with a much deserved glass of wine. And breathe. 

So, what have I possibly got to moan about? It's strange, but I feel time is running out for me to make my mark on the world, to set the world on fire and to experience things that are outside of my (admittedly quite fabulous) life here in London.

So am I having a mid-life crisis? Is this what it's all about. Will I go out and buy a Porsche to show the world I am here? Well, no actually, to the Porsche anyway, as unless my midlife crisis leads me to donning a balaclava and robbing a bank, it just aint going to happen!

Anway, it's not about the material things. It's not even about living abroad. Or not being happy with my lot. In fact as I am typing this, I realise I am not even totally sure what it's actually about at all!

Maybe writing this is my therapy (my therapist friend Booj will be so jealous she didn't get to give me a life-coaching analysis session), as I feel a bit better already just for letting it out!

And then the epiphany comes, like a thunderbolt out of the sky, that jolts a moment of clarity into my heat induced frazzled brain (it's hot and humid outside). I AM SCARED OF BEING ORDINARY!

Wow. That's it. I am scared of being ordinary. In fact it terrifies me - that I might become Mr middle aged, job, house and two kids. That that is what will define me.

What does it mean to be ordinary anway? Does my fear mean that I want to be extraordinary? My frazzled brain is spinning now - I feel I am on the home straight. 

Let's re-cap...

1. My friends are leaving
2. Their leaving has stirred up feelings of anxiety
3. I am happy with everything in my life
4. Something is gnawing at me. 
5. I don't want to be ordinary

.... Nope that didn't help one bit. Note to self, re-capping is just a waste of keystrokes. I am now running out of the ability to self-analyse, maybe I do need a session with Booj after all? Or maybe my heavy Saturday night is kicking in and I won't even give it a thought tomorrow morning. 

So enough of my ramblings. I am going round in circles and it's doing none of us any favours. Go forth my wonderful friends and enjoy your amazing experience. Have the time of your lives. I will miss you both dearly. 

I will be here... but I will NEVER, EVER be ordinary! In fact, after I have organised getting my car MOT'd, made dinner and posted the DVD back to Lovefilm - I might even set the world alight! Small steps though and all that.

What do you think?


dirtycowgirl said...

This has made me chuckle. Actually it might be something to do with your age, I had a crisis at 30. It just sounds so much older to be in your thirties as opposed to twenties. However by 32 I loved it, people treat you with more respect and the desire to 'prove' is not so much. Turning 40, when we're supposed to have a crisis was a breeze. I guess it may also be that having (from the sounds of it) achieved financial stability, which some people never manage or have as a goal for a long time, you're just looking for something new to achieve.
The grass is always greener eh ?
Having a child will change that though - it gives you a whole new perspective.
And my child moved to Barcelona in May..yup ! Jealous. Much. But I'm off for a free holiday in two weeks so it has it's perks :)

Mr Musing said...

Hi DCG, actually I am feeling much better now. Think it was a mixture of realising that I would really miss my friends with the aftermath of a particuarly heavy Saturday night out. If this is my mid-life crisis I guess it's not that bad - although I suspect this was merely a mini blip.

Have a fab time in Barcelona - I love it there!

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