I’ve never put much value in numbers.
I stopped doing maths the minute it became optional.
I arranged holidays around budget time when I worked in newspapers.
Hell, I don’t even own a set of working scales!
So when it comes to age, i’ve not cared too much either.
Which is contrary to the dozens of girlfriends i know, fretting that they’re on their way out of their 20’s and haven’t ticked everything off on their invisible “shit to do before I’m 30” list; get married, have kids, coach the under-10s girls soccer team to victory, build a fully renewable-organic-vegan-chemical free homestead created solely from recycled buttons found at a fair-trade thrift shop … complete with a lifetime supply of kale!
Unlike them, I woke up on my 28th birthday not too fussed with my obvious shortfalls in life. Sure i’m still living 3000 kilometres away from my family and boyfriend. Sure i managed to kill a succulent (a desert plant) in my study. And sure I’m still working in a job that pays me less than the kid who works Sundays at my local Coles.
That was until a birthday lunch back at my family home during a weekend visit to Adelaide. *Cue Ennio Morricone’s ‘The Good, The Bad & The Ugly’ theme song now*
Unsuspecting, somewhere between a piece of tiramisu and a ricotta filled cannoli, the shots to get me to start caring came firing my way.
First my mum turned to me and my man of nine years and said, “So when are you two finally going to buy a place together?” Bang! The ol’ ‘GROW UP & BUY SOME PROPERTY’ argument was fired.
Then the sister chimed in with a very loaded, “Yeah somewhere with a biiiig backyard?” Boom! The ol’ ‘HAVE A BABY’ bullet.
But the real stinger came courtesy of my boyfriend’s grandma, Nonna Geraldina.
“Welllllll,” she said in her delightful Italian accent, “A bigga backyard’a will be no good if you dont’a come’a back’a here soon.” Burn! The ol’ YOUR BABY MAKER IS GETTING TOO OLD, YOU BETTER PUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP BEFORE YOUR CAREER SOONER RATHER THAN LATER’ grenade to finish it all off!
Yep. With good dollop of guilt, a time bomb was placed on my ovaries. On my birthday. Courtesy of the people I love most … during dessert nonetheless!
Needless to say i’m putting some more value into numbers. Now pass me that calculator, would ya?