coming up to my 23rd year...

16 August 2012

A few months back me, my mum and sis were going through the seemingly thousands of boxes of crap stuff that we have accumulated throughout the years as a family.

(just so you can gauge just how many boxes there were, they filled an entire room. and were stacked as high as me. the task was nearly as daunting as going through my pictures from italy. but not quite.)

Working my way through some of my boxes i came across my old school books.
(there were no less than 150 of them. what can i say, i worked hard)

In one of them from year 7, at the tender age of 12 , we were given a task to complete.
To plan out what we think our lives would be like in ten years time.

It is my 23rd birthday on monday.
I am coming to the end of that all important tenth year.

I decided it would be quite interesting to compare what i thought my life might be like at the age of 22 to what my life is actually like at 22.
Oh boy, was it an eye opening experience!!

according to my 12 year old self

i would be living in london with my husband, our first baby and our massive dog. we would own a lovely semi-detached, three bedroom house - the price would be precisely two hundred thousand pounds. i would have a job in a hospital, earning twenty-three thousand pounds a year - i think it was as a nurse but due to just having a baby i would be on maternity leave, obvs.
weekends would be spent with family and friends. we would have roughly two holidays a year visiting the far corners of the earth, exploring away till our hearts were content with our little family. over all it sounded pretty realistic at the time.
i remember it well.

according to my 'real' life

i am living in london. score! i have always wanted to live in a city and i knew that i definitely would. it suits me, i love the feeling of the city always feeling awake, i love the way that there are always people around, i love the way there is so much history and culture everywhere you look.
i do not have a husband. i am living with my boyfriend. one day hopefully we might get married, but definitely not yet - we are not ready and we have so much yet to learn about each other and ourselves. i am determined to do this right, he means too much to me to get it wrong.
we do not have a baby. see above for the reasons why. i mean seriously, at 22? what was i thinking, clearly someone needed to clonk me round the head when i was 12!!
we do not have a dog. we have a goblin. he is our little baby for now and is a pretty cool mister.
we do not own a house. we rent. and for now that is expensive enough. we could only dreaaaaam of being able to buy a three bedroom house for as little as two hundred thousand!!! my god, can you just imagine????
i do not work in a hospital. but i do have a good job. it is a pretty standard 9-5 job, but i get to work with a really lovely lady who makes it all worth while. also...i cant believe i didn't realise i am far too squeamish to be a nurse, silly me! clonk me again!
i do spend my weekends with family and friends. they mean the world to me and i enjoy my weekends a lot. spending time with them all makes me happiest lady.
we do not quite have two holidays a year. we wish. not quite that rich yet! one day hopefully.


when i was 12 those ten years in front of me seemed endless. being naive (as most kids that age are) i was sure that things would develop slowly and organically, that there was all the time in the world to get to where i thought i wanted to be. like a slap on the face i have realised that this could not be further from the truth...
life simply happens and life happens quickly.
i have now lived in london since january 2008 and they have been the hardest, quickest but best four years i could have asked for. i have grown into a woman (albeit a woman who does not act her age half the time, but i am confident i am not the only one) and if you asked me now when i wish i could have all those things my 12 year old asked for i would probably say.. 'lets make that by the time i am 32'.
i know now that life happens quickly and you have to remain present to catch it all but i am not prepared to rush certain things in my life. i will not rush getting married, or having a family, or buying a house, just for the sake of wanting things by a certain age. i want my life to grow on its own, with no 'age' restrictions or expectations and no-one telling me what i should or should not have. i love my life here in london with ben and goblin, in our little rented home with all of our friends and family close by and i have worked hard to get to where i am.
i am proud of what i have achieved in my life.
even if it isn't what i expected.
so what i am trying to say is, take it easy, see how your life pans out and don't be disappointed when it isn't what you expected - it might even be for the better. hope you have a lovely thursday..


  1. I really enjoyed reading this - plus it has given a me a huge idea to try and dig out my school books (I'm sure we had a similar task), plus I want to read some of my old essays (I used to be so good at English)! Ahh :)
    Rache @ Live.Food.Love [xo]

    1. Dont they just love those type of tasks in english schools!!!
      I was best at English at school and college and some of my a-level essays are amazing - not sure i could write them as good now!!! Thanks for your sweet words x

  2. What a wonderful idea for a post! We had to write an "autobiography" in second grade...and I had quite the funny little plan for myself back then! I'm 22, as well, and it is funny to see what has and hasn't "come true" :)

  3. That's a really good post Nicola! It was fun to read!x

  4. This is great!! I was recently reading my old journals from years ago, and it is crazy to look back on old aspirations and look at where we are in our lives right now.
    Great post! :)

  5. Such a wonderful post! I hope you have a wonderful Birthday!

  6. Hiya!
    I love this post, and you are actually not too far off your expectations, which is pretty dang good. At 12 years old I was convinced I would be married to Pacey from Dawson's Creek and be a famous movie star (those were the days!)

    I like your advice of just letting life happen ... I tend to make year-by-year plans. This year was new flat and new job and new man (well, two out of three ain't bad!)

    Have a good weekend:)

  7. this so so lovely! I love the perspective... we all need some of that from time to time. (and happy almost birthday!)

  8. This is so great! I think it would be fun to write a "Where will I be in 10 years" note to myself now and see how much comes true!


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