29

Tomorrow I will turn 29.

Normally, this would be causing me to panic wildly, but since Spring has decided to grace us with its presence early, I’m feeling strangely ok with getting older.

My one complaint however, is that usually, I write my help, I’ve achieved nothing since my last Birthday post before my Hoorah! Spring is here, I can smile again post and seeing as the weather in London has been the way it has for the last week, I’m not entirely sure what to do with my traditional set up. I can’t very well ignore the gloriousness of my current environment just to stick to tradition. A part of me was hoping that the day it hit 16 degrees was a one-off, but the sun just kept shining. The sunglasses are out and I haven’t worn tights all weekend, so clearly the warmth has decided to stick around for a while. Its effects won’t go undocumented.

The most noteworthy thing here, is my calmness. My new found stoicism. It is ok that I’m only a little, tiny bit, away from 30. The dreaded number where everyone feels pressured to stop fooling around and get ‘proper’ jobs. It was the age I assumed I would already have amassed a fortune, a healthy property portfolio and a blinging ring on my finger. Clearly I haven’t made it to the top of the New York Times Bestseller list and thus none of these things have come to fruition. But you know what? I’M OK WITH THAT.

I type in caps, because I’m surprised. Me. Me. Neurotic, forward planning, forever pushing, me, is ok with not having reached a bar that I set for myself. I should pop the champagne for that sole reason. I’ve finally conquered my own hysteric.

Maybe it’s just because the sun is out. If it rises in its full glory tomorrow, I’ll be forever grateful because for once, I won’t have the birthday blues.

That last sentence would have been the perfect end to this post, but I wanted to mention Devoted and Disgruntled. Its seventh year happened to be my first and I salute you Improbable and all the D and D participants, I believe you have a big part to play in my current satisfaction.

Let me explain, D and D is like a theatre conference, except it’s in open space format and therefore allows for anyone to call a session. I was blown away by the amount of expertise in the room surrounding me, along with the sincerity and honesty of those calling out for help. Quite a few times I conversed with people I admire, follow on twitter and generally hold in high esteem without any sense of “oh you’ve made it and look at little old me”. I felt equal, something I struggle with. I felt like an artist. I felt real and I felt alive. Most of all, I didn’t feel bad about turning 29, or approaching 30 or even going beyond that.

Previously, my main concern was that once I hit 30, the funding stops. A lot of establishments like OVNV offer amazing opportunities to those under 30. Many programs have an upper age limit of much lower than 30, which really is unfair for people who find creativity any later than a teenager. For example I would love to apply to the Royal Court’s Young Writers Scheme, but I’m no longer a young playwright. Maybe the issue is that I still think of myself as a fledgling writer as opposed to an already successful one who could in fact just make a submission regardless of whether I have graduated from a scheme or not…

Anyway, if we go back to the issue of 30…it means that I only have one more year to take advantage of help, of money being thrown at me. I have one year to make it, to make people see how much I have to offer. But really, that’s not entirely true. And I have to say thank you for the people who helped me see that.

So thanks, D and D 7 for letting me be ok with being me. It’s clichéd, but there is a reason why the best things always are.

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