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Oh will you give me a break, please!  Ever felt like that when someone comments on how young you look in your wedding photo? Oh the beautiful hair, the immaculate make up, the dress of princess status proportions … I defy anyone not to have looked their absolute best on that special day. Let’s not fast film to a hassled, frantic mother 18 years on – 3 teenage children etc etc … that’s not such a pretty sight but I’ll let you in to a little secret – she doesn’t look quite so as ‘wow’ – let’s just say there isn’t a photo of that up on the wall – let’s just leave it at that.

But … don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t bother me (too much) that I look older now (well maybe just a little tiny bit) but when someone says it and seems surprised well that gets me … big time. Of course I look bloody older. Apart from the fact that it was nearly 20 years ago and it would be, quite frankly, ridiculous if I still looked 24 when I’m definitely not 24 … hmmm i’m sounding like I do care that I look older – arghhhhhh – that’s not where I was meant to be going with this! But, listen, in those nearly 20 years I’ve had three children – one of who is now taller than me, two of whom have bigger feet than me and two who definitely have way more attitude than I ever did (well almost…) – trust me, that doesn’t happen all in the first year of a marriage – that takes some serious toll on one’s youthful glow…

Add that together with the fact that I’ve probably had 3650 nights of disturbed sleep in that time, not slept past 6:30 in 5840 days, dealt with maybe 500 child sick days, numerous ‘husband with man flu’ days, handled toddler tantrums which definitely reach the 1000 plus mark and – oh my god this could possibly take all the blame for my ageing process – probably done 18,615 loads of washing I think I have absolutely every right to deservedly look a little bit older than my 24 youthful care free years of when I got married.

Am I bitter? No, it’s been worth it (think I may have grimaced only a tiny bit when I wrote that). Do I wish I still looked 24? No, I’m proud of what I’ve achieved in 18 years (still holding on to the belief that it would be very odd looking 24 with three teenage children in tow!). Am I considering a facelift, tummy tuck and bum lift – too damn right – bloody ageing process, bloody wedding photo, bloody friends being surprised that I’ve aged … just saying!

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