We’re not getting old, we’re getting awesome

I wrote this as a guest post for F For Foxtrot. Go check out her brilliant blog now!

Have you got a big birthday coming up, like my foxy friend F For Foxtrot? Well let me hit you with the positive news, in case you’re not good at reading titles:

For me, getting older has been awesome. 

I’m not saying “I can’t wait to be 97!” – although I do think I will have a LOT of fun pulling old lady pranks on the general public.

What I am saying is that I very much prefer being in my thirties to any age that I’ve yet experienced.

I’m sure ages 0 to 5 were fun, but I don’t remember much.

Then ages 6 to 11 are a blur of savage best friend rivalries.

Ages 12 to pretty much last Tuesday are just a graveyard of fashion disasters.

So, if you’re on verge of turning the big 3-0, DON’T PANIC. Because being a “grown up” has its perks.

If you want to go to the cinema on your lonesome so you can cry your eyes out to Pixar’s Inside Out, you can.

And I did last Sunday.

If you want sweets – and only sweets – for dinner, you can.

And I did last Friday.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

A legit thirtysomething dinner

YOU are the boss of you when you’re a grown up. And I happen to be a pretty chilled out boss; I regularly send myself home early for good behaviour.

I’m not saying it’s ALL fun and games getting older. You could cause yourself some serious RSI having to scroll, scroll, scroll back to find your ancient birth year when filling out forms.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

Words like ‘mortgage repayments’, ‘MOTs’ and ‘bi-focals’ all fill me with dread, but when it comes to your own personal style, age is nothing but a big old blessing.

Who among us hasn’t tried to hide every photo from their teenage, experimental years? You look back at the white eyeliner, shell suits and the ‘100% babe’ t-shirts and just go: “What was I thinking?!”.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

Sister Sister made me desperately want to be a twin, but also gave me misguided confidence in the floppy hat department

For the blokes among you I think the biggest style travesty of the 90s was curtains. Most of the blame falls at the feet of those pop gangsters, The Backstreet Boys.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

Nick calls this pose his “Dr Evil with hair”

In our younger years we not only struggle with knowing what suits us but, piled on top of that pain, we also don’t even get to be the captain of our own Style Ship.

disasters of a thirtysomethingYour MUM gets to be captain & can just go RIGHT ahead & give you a MULLET

One of the worst moments of my life, in terms of finding my own style, happened when I was 12. I was to be a new girl AGAIN, joining a secondary school in the second year. But during the summer – before I was to undertake this scary, new start at this scary, new school – my dear, darling MOTHER persuaded me to have my hair cut short because it would be “quicker drying after swimming”.

I’m not Rebecca Adlington…I think I swam once a week.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

Plus she has long hair & managed to find enough time to dry it & win 2 bloody Olympic golds

Anyway, against my better judgement, and considering MulletGate ’89 still haunted many of my dreams, I was persuaded to go from shoulder length to that infamous “quicker for drying after swimming” two inch crop.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

I looked 1% Natalie Portman

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

99% convict

Who am I kidding? I looked a grand total of 0% Natalie Flipping Portman.

Cue my first day at this Big School and I’m sat, cross-legged in morning assembly, all new girl nervous quivers and “will they LIKE me?!” angst.

A new student joining at an unusual time sends a ripple of excitement through a couple of hundred tweenagers. I overheard a boy in front of me, as he turned to share his titbit of gossip with the girl next to him: “Heard there’s someone NEW in our year”.

What came next is burned into my psyche. BURNED. FOREVER.

Unaware I could see her, the girl pointed at me and innocently whispered: “what, him?”.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

Actual floor-open-up-spit-on-my-face-mortifying

She wasn’t even being MEAN. This was no Regina George spiteful Burn Book entry. This was a legitimate mistake and – at the time – that seemed worse.

She wasn’t trying to upset me. She didn’t even know I’d heard her. SHE JUST GENUINELY THOUGHT I WAS A CHAP.

That incident started a lifelong fear of being mistaken for anything other than the XX chromosome human that I am.

Never again will I let my mum dictate my hairstyle (Fool me once, shame on me; fool me twice, I’m a crop-haired idiot).

I’m also finding I’m settling more into my confidence with clothes as I’ve progressed all the way up to the grand old age of 31. When I was a teenager I might have seen something I thought was really cool but thought “I could NEVER carry that off”.

Now I give myself a little Mindy-being-Beyoncé power talk if I see something that I love but just think ‘isn’t me’. I’ll say to myself “if you BUY it, then it WILL be ‘you’”.

We're not getting old, we're getting awesome

In a nutshell, people – be happy you’re getting older. Praise the Lord on HIGH that there was no Instagram when you were 15. I don’t think the Internet would have had enough spare pixels for photos of my frizzy head.

So embrace the ageing process: unlimited sweets for dinner and not a mullet in sight. Unless it’s a cool, ironic mullet. In which case, go for it.


Over to you: What’s been your biggest style disaster?


28 replies »

  1. This is brilliant and so accurate! Thank god for our childhoods being pre- Instagram, there is no filter invented that could fix the ‘I cut my own fringe’ chic that looked like I’d survived a close encounter with a rabid shredder 😒


  2. Helen has just told me she found your blog and to take a look at it. OMG!! Your writing is epic!

    Witty and so so true for us ladies in our 30s!

    Loving it loving loving it 😘


  3. I’m glad I finally got off my phone and onto a computer so I could read your blog because I just cried laughing through this entire post. “Fool me twice, I’m a crop-haired idiot” had me rolling. If it makes you feel any better, I didn’t grow hair until I was 5. I showed up to my preschool Christmas concert in a dress and my whole class was confused because they’d thought I was a boy for 4 months. Putting a reminder in my phone to come back here every day, genuinely think it’s going to improve my quality of life. xx


    • Wow!! Paige! Thank you so much you sweet, sweet thang!! I’ve just woken up so you’ve already made my day.
      Love that you’ve put a reminder in to check everyday- I don’t post everyday but there ARE now about 35 stories there so you can read the old ones. They’re in no particular order anyway.
      Massive love!!! ❤️


  4. Amen. I’ve just turned 30 and couldn’t be happier. When I was 18 I thought I knew everything and looking back I was just a total moron. When I was 20 I always felt like I didn’t fit in and wasn’t “young” enough. Now I’m 30 I can finally act my age and feeling like I’m settling in to myself. Roll on Thirties – I’m ready for you!


  5. I had a floppy Sister Sister hat. I wore it with tye-dye dungarees that had a smiley hippy sun picture on the front across-breast pocket. Oh the 90s rocked 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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