When I graduated from university and took up a position working in a job unrelated to my degree course, I came up with a bit of an ‘adult list’. No, not like that… I came up with a list of tick boxes as to what I thought being an ‘adult’ meant, and things I needed to achieve pronto. With the power of hindsight I now realise how ridiculous this actually was, but I will talk you through my list anyway.
1. Career: As an adult with a degree I fell into a category that the media harps on about as being able to get better paid jobs, and well, just jobs in general. Here I was with a total passion, and the technical skill to back it up, but no one wanted me. I had applied to so many jobs, had some interviews and been turned down flat for others. My career box was not ticked.
2. Own Home: To clarify, I didn’t expect to be a homeowner at 22. I did however expect to be living in a shared rented house, away from my sleepy village and having the best time with some new housemates. Maybe we could even save for some rent-to-buy scheme if the career was working out. No, I was still living at home.
3. Relationship: My parents, the wonders that they are, have been married for over 38 years. Which also means that my mum was married by the time she was my age. Not only was I still single, the dates I had been on seemed pretty hopeless, I just didn’t want t get involved with anyone I didn’t totally want to commit my time to. Apparently commitment scares me a tad. Maybe I should consider putting together a PetPlan savings account for all the cats I would have.
4. Driving: I started learning late, certain complications got in the way, beyond the powers of my control. Then I had lessons, realised that although I consider myself pretty calm and collected, tests scared the life out of me. Yes, that is plural. I did tests. Then I failed them. On top of that, my theory test certificate expired.
But then I found something I had written on a piece of paper: ‘I want to have an extraordinary life’.
This was my goal, why had I placed so much emphasis and allowed myself to be so dragged down by these ordinary things I hadn’t yet achieved? They weren’t my real goals, and this mental tick list was dreamt up by a girl to taunt herself with when times were harder. I noticed the people around me filling in this tick list quite nicely, but these things weren’t for me quite yet.
All of those jobs I wasn’t offered, guided me to find paid work which insured I was able to save up the money to fund my latest collection (coming soon!) Working for a charity and managing a team of people taught me skills in humility that perhaps I wouldn’t have gained if I had walked straight in to my dream job. It also taught me to want it more, to show these people that they had missed out. They would want me, they just hadn’t realised it yet. Living at home still wasn’t what I had planned either, but I felt grateful that my parents welcomed me back and supported my choices. Not only this, but I was able to save that bit extra by not moving straight to London and spending every penny on rent and living. My previous relationships and dates hadn’t worked out the way I thought they might, but we’re not stuck in a Jane Austin novel. I think at 22 I still have a bit of time left! Meeting lots of new people taught me my value and has set the bar. Furthermore, not being able to drive has meant that I appreciate public transport more, I love people watching, maybe a bit of occasional eavesdropping and having a railcard means that I am unstoppable (or so I think).To add to this, I have just started learning again, so here’s hoping.
This year, a week before my 23rd birthday I have dressed Helena Bonham Carter, had photographs of her modelling taken by Mario Testino and these will be featured in the September ‘Style’ Issue of Vanity Fair.
I think I have started to live that extraordinary life… ❤
Just a bit of proof- because I am still unsure if this has really happened… ❤
Here is a link that makes me pretty excited: http://www.vanityfair.com/archive/helena-bonham-carter?&page=1#type=articles