Saturday, January 14, 2012

Thirty Five

I haven't been doing Jen's 7 Quick Takes for a while but always enjoy reading hers (and others). This week she celebrates her thirty fifth birthday and asks ... "if you are older than 35, tell me about what you were doing at this age. How do you feel about that time of your life? Anything you'd do differently?"

I remember 35 as a particularly happy time. Helen (oh dear! I can't get used to this! I may yet simply revert to using their real names) was seven months old and I was still technically on a maternity break from working on my doctorate on medieval knights. In fact by that stage I was back to doing quite a bit of research but was not under any pressure to get a particular amount done, making it an enjoyable and leisurely process. I was able to work from home most of the time as a lot of the source material for the period I was working on is in print. The London Library's mail order service was a godsend at this time.  Tevye had spent nearly a year at home after taking redundancy from his previous job so took on a large share of the baby care. I think at this point he had just started doing some freelance work writing exam questions for a couple of days each week. I may have been teaching in London one evening a week, but I can't remember for sure.

I don't think I am looking back through rose-tinted glasses, but I honestly can't think of anything I would do differently. We were very fortunate to have a wonderful work-life balance where we both got to spend lots of time with Helen but also to do other mentally stimulating things. Rather to my surprise I had discovered I loved having a baby - with no small relatives or close friends with babies I had no experience of them before having my own, and had rather expected that I would find the baby stage boring. In fact, I adored it. Thirty five was good!

1 comment:

Missus Wookie said...

Sounds like a lovely year!