Ageing and changing
I can't believe that in 35 days I'll be celebrating my 55th birthday. My mother used to say that when you age you don't feel differently on the inside it's just the way you look on the outside. Well, that and the fact that there are a lot more bits of me that hurt.
When I was 40 I had planned in my mind a huge birthday bash for when I turned 50. That didn't happen the way I planned but, a couple of months later, we did have a lovely party for mums and daughters in our back garden. It was a beautiful day and great to be able to share it with girls and women ages 6 to 66.
Turning 55 has so many conotations and the ageing process is not always kind. However I also think that maybe this next couple of decades will be decades of opportunity and growth in ways that were just not possible whilst I was concerned with the more practical matters of life raising my two children.
What I wasn't expecting at this point was the realization that on an almost daily basis, with the exception of my clients at work, friends and family, I am invisible .
I had been quite a head turner when I was young - my daughters now do that and yay for them, but more than that, I had presence. Now I seem to merge with the passing traffic. Perhaps its always been that way but I feel like I have way more to offer - certainly I am kinder, have more patience and a different perspective, l am less judgemental and more accepting of others.
So, for the next two decades and hopefully more, I will focus not so much on the external but on the internal. This means making time to write more, to finally realize those books, prose and songs which have been left to become dull within the murky depths of not doing, to create through jewellery and silk painting beautiful objects to share with others and to emerge visible through who I am and not who I am seen to be.
I don't have big plans for the day itself, but I am planning to mark it by a special dinner, perhaps a trip to the spa with my daughters and a couple of close friends. The importance of a big bash is less now than it used to be for me . More important is the quiet enjoyment and the ongoing stimulation received from words, music, art, family and friends
This year I began an online motivational journal - called Finding Fiji (http://lizamiles-theartofhealthandwellness.blogspot.com/). I am exploring happiness and the process of self reflection for any age through a range of creative exercises. This simple daily or almost daily exercise is bringing me so much joy - and yet to have tried it before would not have worked, I wasn't in the right headspace.
Mary Wesley who wrote some wonderful novels was in her 70's before she was published. Her writing on hold whilst she raised and cared for her family.
It is never too late to pursue my (our) dreams - the only thing that gets in the way of me (us) doing that is ourselves. Easy to say but hard to do, but oh, when we do - then we are braver and more bold and can fly with eagles.
So Happy Birthday to me and anyone else out there who is facing the reaiity of ageing and changing and may your next two decades, however old you are bring you all you wish for.