“So, what does your 48th year look like?” my friend asked. I was at a loss for words and felt oddly uncomfortable. Had I lost all fire, drive and ambition. Is this what happens to middle age women?
Last night my friend and I contemplated life over a bottle of wine. It was the eve of my 47th birthday.
I was reminded of how thankful I am for friends who bring out the best in you, who believe in you, and who fill the space between you with positive light. I was also reminded just how much I appreciate friends who ask pointed questions—the kind of friends who give you a swift kick, launch you out of your comfort zone, and really make you think.
Last night my friend looked me straight in the eye and asked me this question.
“So, what does your 48th year looked like?”
I was at a loss for words and felt oddly uncomfortable. I dug deep to muster up a response, but nothing came. And you know what, it scared me.
Is This What Happens to Middle Age Women?
The year I turned 18 marked my departure for college. The year I turned 21, I began traveling to exciting cities with my first job. The year I blew out 31 candles was the year I got married. When 36 rolled around I was expecting my first child. Now I was turning 47? Unlike all birthdays past, the prospects of the coming year appeared to be anything but extraordinary.
From the moment I woke this morning, I have mulled over why I was at a loss for an answer to my friend’s question—why I seemingly had lack of vision for the year to come. What frightened me most was the possibility that I had lost all fire, drive and ambition. Is this what happens to middle age women?
In my heart of hearts I knew that wasn’t the case. So what was the deal?
Fire, drive and ambition are still very much at the core of my being, but what I have determined is that this 48th year is about staying the course.
Living in Reality
Our reality, ladies, is that many of us middle age women are knee-deep in raising children, navigating marriage, exhaustingly saving for retirement, and doing what we can to stay healthy and fit so that we don’t die tomorrow! Our reality (or at least mine) isn’t all flash and glam. Jet setting was something I did in my 20’s, and—oh, crap, it’s 4 o’clock I-gotta-go-pick-up-the-kids-and-I-have-no-idea-what-I’m-making-for-dinner.
As simple as it sounds, this 48th year is about staying the course. To stay the course is going to take focus, diligence and willingness to make necessary adjustments—of which I have every intention of making. In my 48th year:
- I am going to move and stretch.
- I am going to set time aside for God and my soul.
- I am going to invest more in my marriage.
- I am going to continue to love and greet my children each morning with a smile.
- I am going to streamline, travel light and cut the fake stress out of my life.
- I am going to excel at managing our finances and living simply.
- I am going to plan meals.
I have no desire to live in a false reality. At this moment, where I am in life IS my reality. I love it and embrace it joyfully.
I believe each of us has a calling—a work that God has asked of us, and this is what He has asked of me in my 48th year.
“Stay the course, just stay the course and let me show you beautiful things!”
I’m curious, what has He asked of you this year?
I like that motto and list for me too. A reminder that i don’t need to be striving to achieve amazing things, that what i actually have achieved is already amazing and now i just need to stay the course ! And look after myself. .
Jenni, you are so right! We have achieved so much already! More often than not, ordinary things are really amazing things when you really stop to observe them. I, too, am looking forward to seeing more beauty in ordinary days.