I find it nearly impossible to wrap my head around the fact that I’m a few months short of having TWO children in their twenties. And a few weeks beyond that I’ll truly know what 50 looks and feels like.
What does one do when they are suddenly there – that place that you have thought about, imagined and set expectations around?
Well, I’m here to tell you, 50 does not look anything like what I thought. I am not a perky 20-year-old, I know this for sure. I have a daughter turning that age shortly and her light and energy are uniquely for the young. I am, though, far “perkier” than I thought 50 would be.
I’m a whole lot more aware of who I am and how I want to live my life although who I am continues to be in flux. I hate to admit it, but all those people who say life is better around this age, well, they might be on to something.
Looking at my children, though, I think – they have great, truly great lives. I think that they are creating the lives they want to live. And they seem to be surrounded by people doing the same thing.
What will their lives be like at 50? Better than great? One can only hope.
So, like them, I am creating, or more aptly re-creating, my life. The summer ahead is incredibly open-ended and I plan to seize it, breathe it in. Set the stage to meet some new goals. A personal best on a half marathon walk. And a 200 km bike ride to raise funds for cancer, a ride in honour of my parents and their individual fights against cancer.
That’s a huge upside – having the time to meet the goals that you set, relatively uninterrupted in the pursuit.
The downside, let’s be honest, is that I loved having children at home to interrupt my path to any given goal. Being a hands-on, full-time mom was incredibly rewarding. I miss that.
Oh, and there’s the wrinkles. The aches and pains. The frustration, more easily controlled, but still present. The frustration at others for their incessant focussing on things that don’t matter. “This too shall pass” is easier to understand at this age and stage.
The view from here seems clearer than the view from 20, hindsight being what it is. Similar to when I was 20, though, the world feels full of opportunity. The question returns: which path to take?