My understanding was always as follows, more or less:
- You spent your early 20s not really knowing what you were doing, but that was okay because you didn’t really care that much as you were still young;
- In your late 20s to mid 30s you were finding your feet, establishing yourself in life: in work, in a secure social circle, in your home, in a relationship;
- In your late 30s and into your 40s you’d be, well, I suppose some might call it ‘settling down’. I don’t think I’d refer to it in those terms, but I certainly always imagined that in my 40s I would feel rather more established and, most importantly, at least somewhat secure and grounded.
I don’t. Not in the slightest. The ground seems to fall away beneath me whenever I attempt a nervous, wary step forward. As for security, I long for something — and yes, occasionally someone — to hold on to.
I am overwhelmed and absolutely terrified by the lack of certainty in everything — absolutely everything, I promise you — that comprises my life. Home/accommodation, family, friends, work/career, finances. I don’t know which way to turn, mainly because I’m not entirely sure I really have a way to turn. If even just one of those found some balance, some sense, it would help.
Rootless, groundless, searching, lost.
And that’s why, as now, I so frequently don’t sleep, but instead lie awake in the darkness, exhausted by tiredness and bewildered, virtually imprisoned by those all-consuming fears.
I need peace.