Women’s Words on Aging
I’ve been retired for 11 years and I’m 69 years young. I have weathered challenges and lessons in my career and a few in retirement. The learning continues. It’s good to laugh at yourself and keep on trucking. Picture this: me beginning a Jazz dance class at 60. It is a riot. I can’t make a 3 step turn. The music is too darn fast and what was that new move? The body rebels, the mind — well, “show me that again!” There were humbling times of being a neophyte among competents. Years into this, competence or not, it’s just plain fun and that’s okay. It’s all a part of making new friends and learning to play in a new way.
The interior soul’s journey is coming along. I once thought “what are those old folks doing? I don’t see the action.” I’ve come to understand the action and growth can be in the interior soul life if we pursue it. This is bringing me to a closer walk with our Lord. All of life gains meaning. Mind, body, spirit – life is good.
Peace be with you all,
Paso Robles, CA
I will be 60 years old in November 2012. I am a caregiver for my 91-year-old father and my sisters and I split our time between his house and our houses. This is something we felt we needed to do. My husband recently had minor surgery and I thought about who would take care of me if I had major surgery or in old aging. I took a look at my health and life insurance policies to make sure that my family would be able to make the best decisions for my care and was satisfied that I was sufficiently covered. Now, I enjoy spending all of my spare time with my husband and kids, and doing whatever else life has to offer.
When my youngest son left high school, I was 48 and I couldn’t handle it. I convinced myself that I had made a huge sacrifice for my three sons at the expense of my career. I was very resentful; I believed my age was catching up to me and therefore, I was too old to advance in my professional life. Then, I began a soul-searching examination of my motives. I discovered that my deepest inner value was my family and therefore, they were my priority. My choices were not a question of sacrifice. Rather, I was acting on what was most valuable to me. Because I realized we make choices according to our values, I was ready to embark on a new journey. Since then, I have had three amazing professional positions: Financial Controller of a large business, elected Councillor on Local Government, and Business Consultant.
Twelve years later, in the year 2012, I made another change. I have been told I am crazy. I thank my family and friends who thought it, and told me, because it allowed me to reflect. The exercises revealed to me that I acted on my deepest inner value each time. As a result, I acted on a deeper calling to continue to learn mastering myself so that I can be the best I can be for myself, my family, and to effectively help others. Today, I am helping people transform through their Stories and their Voices. I know there will always be challenges and it takes courage to move forward because it is not only ourselves we have to face, but also family, friends, and other well-meaning people. If you ask me if I would do anything differently with hindsight, my answer is “NO.” Among the important lessons I’ve learned are: do not to lose sight of the reasons for my decisions, follow my deepest listening, and always be true to myself.