I turned 60 this September, a milestone birthday. I celebrated with my children and longtime friends. We had a fabulous time sharing memories and celebrating life. It warmed my heart. This morning on the drive to the office, I reflected on how I would not have done anything differently in life, but also at the same time it occurred to me that I wouldn’t advise anyone to live the way I have. There is so much more to life than what is dictated, than what we’re taught by society, we are so much more than this.
We are more than education and careers, houses or cars or stuff and stuff and stuff, we are more! We are more than work or fame or accomplishment, we are more than what mainstream dictates is important to be happy. So what would I tell young adults? Or even those closing in toward middle age? Change your path, do what you love, be joyous, be wise. Yes. I know it sounds very cliché’ doesn’t it? Follow your dreams, be yourself… but it’s right on target. This is what we discover later with experience and the wisdom that comes with it, when half of life or two-thirds have played out.
It’s not too late really. I can, you can, make a change, small or huge, no matter what, it’s not too late. It’s a conscious choice. It’s a courageous choice. To look at the order of one’s life with a discerning eye listening to the inner questions that have nudged at you forever, that voice you’ve pushed aside again and again. Maybe because the responsibilities overshadowed that small, timid voice. Maybe because you thought it was unlikely, unimaginable, unthinkable that dreams could become reality. Maybe because it would be too much work or too much change and what about those around you? What of them?
So. What to do… what to do. Pull out that notebook, art pad, newsprint paper and make lists, draw, scribble out dreams and words and deepest hearts desires. Examine them, reorder, organize and reorganize and then come up with a plan. Why not? What do you have to lose? What do we have to gain? What life-journey chapter is unwritten? Go… do it! Take the plunge. Live big, out loud, vigorously and with childlike joy. You’ve carried others along, moving them to independence. You’ve done your job as a mother, daughter, sister, friend, father, son, brother… more.
Now. It’s time. What have you imagined? What are those words? The dreams? Have courage. Go… do it.