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Life with Lavendar in London town

Friday, 6 June 2008

Breeders Beware

So I was in Soho with my friend Blue yesterday when we started to talk about aging.

"I go to the gym and run," he said. "And weights twice a week. I'll never give up eating so I have to do something to keep trim. After all, I want to keep going out. Clubbing and whatnot and I don't want to look a desperado when I do. Some people just look like that they don't belong."

I met Blue ten years ago in Australia when we both worked for a god-awful employment agency which eventually crashed and burned. Back then, Blue was already well on the way to becoming fabulous. As well as always being immaculately turned out in designer suits, he had a budding collection of pieces from Newson to Alessi as well as a house that looked like it had come straight out of the pages of Wallpaper magazine.

We were like chalk and cheese; his Prada to my Primark but we bonded over a love of trying new things.

"We met when we were in our mid 20's and now we're sitting here talking about heading towards our 40's," Blue moaned, glugging his third vodka and cranberry.

"You're talking about turning 40. I ain't. I’m in denial"

Blue ignored me and continued his litany:

"Even in your 30's, you can still look good if you work at it but once you hit your 40's, that's it. The decay and decline really starts to set in. I still want to look decent so I can go out"

Blue is gay and in a settled relationship. He and his boyfriend have all the accoutrements of an established urban couple. Nice car, nice house, nice shoes. As we discussed our thoughts on aging, I noticed some similarities in our priorities. Blue wants to keep healthy and look good so he can continue to function in the gay community. It's important to him that he can go places and not look out of place. He wants to be able to go clubbing in his 40's and not be judged.

I can't remember the last time I stepped into the nightclub. But I get where he is coming from. I dance and I've been doing it for years. Now that I'm in my mid 30's, the bod ain't what it used to be. I have aches and pains that aren't going anywhere. But I want to keep limber, keep moving, keep dancing. I don't want to be the weird 40 year old desperado in the corner of the dance class, re-living her youth. I want to be there because I can keep up and look like I should be there.

But what Blue doesn't have on his horizon is the baby clock. He and his partner don't want kids. I, on the other hand can hear a long delayed biological ticking; although that could be the choir of voices that have been in my ear for the past 3 years:

"When are you going to have a baby?"

But what I can't help thinking is that if there is one thing guaranteed to age you, it's kids. I don't know why people say that kids keep you young. On the inside perhaps. Every person I know that has kids, has aged because of it. You can hear a creaking in them that wasn't there before.

It's a vain question I know. But can you still hold onto your youth whilst producing one?

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