…it’s later than you think.
There is a freedom that comes with getting older, a freedom to be more yourself than you ever were when you were young.
When I was young and skinny I spent hours sucking in my non-existent tummy, worrying whether people would look at me and think I was disgusting. Now I wear elasticated waists for comfort and know that if anyone finds a bit of flab disgusting it’s more their problem than mine.
Now if I think something will make me smile, I’ll go for it. A watch with the wee man from operation on it? A necklace with a knife thrower and assistant? Minions, pirates, non-matching socks? So long as I’m happy why should I care what anyone else thinks? It makes me sad to think about all the fun I missed out on by worrying what strangers might think about me.
I used to get embarrassed when my mum sang to me every birthday. Last year, for the first time, she forgot my birthday and I can’t tell you how much I missed hearing her sing. I would go to gigs and sit on my chair, ramrod straight, too shy to move about to the music. Now I’d be dancing in the aisle. I’d spend hours making sure a guy I fancied didn’t know I liked him. Now I never let an occasion pass without telling those I care for how much they mean to me. Today I wouldn’t hesitate to get my shorts dirty (you can see what I mean here), eat corn on the cob in a busy restaurant or sing along with a busker. No one cares what you do, not really. So long as you’re not going about poking people in the eye, no one will care what you do. I really wish I got that when I was young enough to take advantage of it, to enjoy being free and happy.
Listen to Prince Buster. He knows what it’s all about.