It’s three o clock in the morning and a lifetime of bad decisions are chugging through my head like Bruce Springsteen’s freight train.
Not just we should never have bought this house, we should never have moved the children out of their schools, though, it has to be said, those regrets are on a pretty constant loop. Today, at the house of horrors, witching hour that is 3 am, I regret walking out of a brilliant job in fashion journalism on a whim and my husband leaving his steady, well-paid, golden watch at retirement kind of job for the more high octane but less secure freelance version. I even regret my choice of university. (Too small, too remote, too many Sloanes). And this was way before Prince William got there. So much time, so many mistakes. Some people have a knack of always making the right decisions, others, like me, need some kind of whip-cracking guru in their lives, preferably one with psychic powers. Perhaps the best – and worst – decision ever made was to choose a partner who is the indentikit male version of me. I couldn’t have found someone more similar if I’d advertised. Impulsive, hot-headed dreamer seeks the same for ultimate self-combustion. What was needed, what was so clearly needed, in both cases, was for a mammothly organised, law-abiding, pessimist to come along and sweep us off our feet. Only apply if you like tracker mortgages, tax returns and your glass half empty. Because now there are two of us making crazy decisions, falling in love with ridiculous properties all over the country, making exit strategies left, right and centre, Abu Dhabi one week, Las Vegas the next. Imagine if you had a professional decision maker in your life. Just pick up the phone and there they are, ready to gently direct you through life’s crossroads. They could even help you choose in restaurants if you paid a bit extra. They could text you: DEFINITELY the chicken Caesar. Perhaps they might give you an overall life plan when you registered for their services. Ok, here’s what to do. In your twenties, work bloody hard and keep pushing for promotion. Do not fall out with your boss and learn to kiss ass. In your thirties get married, have two children, strictly no more and keep pushing yourself up the property ladder. Do not, I repeat, not take your eye off the ball at this point Do not develop a taste for expensive wine, fast cars and flash holidays. Do not party like a teenager, shop like a WAG or disregard contraception. Have a vasectomy! In your forties, if you’ve followed my advice, you will have made it. But if you haven't, at least you'll have had a good time along the way.