I used to always think turning 30 was the beginning of turning old.
So when the year came, that I was to turn 30. I started to freak out a little…
Until, I remembered something. It all began when I was in grade 3.
It was free dress day and my class mate, ran up to me. “Oh Melanie, it’s you. I thought you were a pre-schooler.”
Too shocked, I made no response.
Then a few years later, I began working in my second job, as a admin assistant for a large company. I had been there for nearly a year, and for the last couple of months I had been working closely with the director. “Melanie, when does your work-experience end?” I’m sorry, what did he say? I responded, cooly. “I am not on work experience. I work here full time, five days a week.” He still seemed a bit lost, so I added, “I am nineteen.”
“Oh, I thought you were sixteen and doing work experience.” (Inwardly sigh).
It seems, I have never transitioned from the teen world.
On my honeymoon with my husband, we were at the beautiful location of Hamilton Island, in the Whitsundays. I wanted to go paddle boarding. I ran over to the staff member who was hiring out the equipment. “Excuse me, can I hire out a paddleboard?”
“You need your parents to sign first.” So embarrassed, I ran back to my husband, grabbed him by the arm. And said, “Come on, I think I would prefer to go for a swim in the pool.” I was 23 years old.
Image via: www.flightcentre.com.au
It seems, as time went by, my age didn’t budge past seventeen.
We soon had our first son (at the age of 28 years). When he was just a baby, I visited the health nurse for check-ups of how he was developing etc. I sat down in the room. And the health nurse looked at me and then said, “Yes I do feel sorry for teenage Mums, they do receive a lot of prejudice but generally are very good parents.” I glanced towards my file, hoping if she took a peak, she could see my true age…
Image: A photo of me and my son at 4 months old.
Then out shopping one day with my darling son, two middle-aged women stopped me in my tracks. “Is that your little brother?” They pointed to my child. “No. He is my son. I am twenty-eight,” I added quickly.
“Oh, you look a lot younger.”
It’s not like I wear mini short shorts or crop tops mind you. I try to aim for classic, modest and elegant looks. Yet, it never seems to amaze me, how I still look like a teenager.
To wrap things up, at the beginning of the year, my husband wanted to take me to a race day. I thought why not? I get to dress up! But as we arrived, before I could even buy a ticket … “Excuse me miss, can I please see your ID?”
“Sure, let me ask my husband to get my wallet for me.” I hand over my ID and in return, I received a red band around my wrist. Stating I was indeed, ‘over the age of 18.’
Image: A photo of my husband and I, at the races. See the red tag?
And finally, to top it off, the day after I turned 30. My family and I were at the check at Costco, when I gave the teller my membership card. He kept talking to my husband, completely ignoring me. I thought it was a bit odd, but just went with it. He turned to my husband, “Oh sir, do you know Melanie?” My husband looks at me, “Yes, she is my wife.” I add in, “I am right here.” The teller looks at me, “Oh I am sorry. I thought you were his younger sister. I didn’t think for one second you were married.”
So as I am turning 30, I am not really worried… I just wonder at what age I will be, before I look 18? When I am in my 40s perhaps or maybe when I am 50?
I wonder what it feels like, to look over 18?
I am grateful for my youthful looks and hope when I am 100, I look twenty. Because, being in my twenties has been a great decade, even if I didn’t look it. Mind you, life is grand, no matter how long I look.
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