Eek, January 2017! Is it a typical human stage? An aging Boomer grasping for last ditch meaning to her life? Am I alone in this? Why is everything so hard right now, but really great in some ways? Was it that damned poem I read as a young teenager that resonated with me so strongly? I’ve remembered it for over fifty years. Did I “optimistically” shape my whole life around a frigging poem? Was that really my defining moment? Dear God!
My last blog was about Reflecting on our lives during the Winter Season, taking stock. I’m taking stock big time. I know we’re just past the holidays and maybe I should be writing something innocuous and cheerful. Frankly, that’s not where I am right now and if my blogging is to be worth anything maybe some readers who really could use some commiseration will relate to me and some good will come out of this for all of us. The rest of you “cheerful ones” don’t need me now anyway. Make your New Years resolutions and keep them. I wish each of you the best year of your life! Don’t forget to express your gratitude!
For those who are ready for a heart to heart, please read on…
What began as a quest to figure out what I believed life was all about (a good thing you would think) has turned my life upside down and “appears” to be a disaster. Some of my closest relationships are hardly existent now and I’m more than sick about it. It’s all my doing, a consequence of my wanting to get the most out of life. This isn’t mid-life crisis, it’s “THE THIRD ACT”, the act in a play where the big stuff we’ve all been waiting for finally happens and everyone lives happily-ever-after. All I want is for my life to have a great THIRD ACT with all the people I love happily sharing it with me. I don’t want to die with only the history I’ve thus far written. It’s too boring for me to bear! I can’t be alone in this. Don’t others want to dance, sing, take risk and triumph! Ah, the risk! It’s been much more than I anticipated. Scary for me, too! But I’m doing everything I can to handle it on my own. I didn’t know that lifetime affection for me would change, if I appeared to change some. I haven’t changed, I’m still here, this has always been me, I just didn’t have the opportunity to take risk when others were in my care. Wouldn’t you think they’d wish me well?
I’ve been a Caregiver all my life. Responsible, reliable, generous with my time and money (I don’t think anyone I know would disagree with that). Since I was very young people came to me with their problems looking for balanced advice. At one workplace the staff assigned nicknames, they called me Mom! I thought I had a good handle on things and my conservative lifestyle seemed to prove that out. Safe. Secure.
But, things changed when I went in search of something more meaningful than life as I knew it. My husband died in March 2010, I was, at 62 years old, for the first time in my life living alone. No parents, no spouse, kids grown and on their own. Some people would find that depressing. I found it liberating and filled with nothing but opportunity.
I had never been religious, couldn’t relate to organized religion and all its rules. But, when I finally had time to think, it occurred to me that life had to be about something more than a superficial existence. It was time to figure out if I could feel something spiritual. I started by reading The Inner Tradition of Yoga, by Michael Stone. It was an eye opener for me. Since then, over 6 years, I’ve read on average two books a week. Most of them on the subjects of the Universe, quantum physics, spirituality and the teachings of Christ, Buddha & Mohammed. All these subjects come together for me in a lovely way that has given me what I was looking for. A sense of being part of something much greater than myself. Something wonderful and inspiring. In this sense my life is better and I’m more optimistic than ever.
However, my quest has shaken my stable, safe life to its roots. So much is better, but so much is awful. I can’t say I should have done it differently, I know that everything is as it should be for me to learn lessons like everyone else. Life throws tough times at us to make us stronger and all that. My objective self always tries to observe myself from a distance, less emotionally attached. But it really hurts right now. I’ve learned that these relationships were never what I thought they were. Me living in optimistic lulu land, I guess. I hope I’m wrong (there I go again), maybe others are hurting as I am and there will be a time to repair. And the relationships will be stronger than ever as a result. How else can I look at it? Give up? Not in me. Patience. I haven’t hit the ground yet!
We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.
– Maya Angelou
Here’s to all my lovely readers, CHEERS! LETS HAVE THE BEST YEAR OF OUR LIVES IN SPITE OF IT ALL! THE THIRD ACT is just getting started. I’m planning on three curtain calls!!
Please let me hear from you if you’d like to chat with me about this subject or any other. Email me at: email@example.com