To paraphrase my mother, it’s not the things you worry about that end up being life’s greatest challenges. What she didn’t say is that the challenges you do face also hold the potential to help you discover who you are.
When I passed the age at which my mother had her first heart attack, I was able to relax a little. I’d dodged that particularly nasty genetic bullet. Now in my mid-fifties, I’m having to confront the limitations imposed by a different type of chronic condition.
After repeated – and unsuccessful – attempts to outpace my movement disorders, I’m starting to accept and make accommodations. Which, paradoxically, will allow me to realize my remaining potential to create and connect with purpose. A specialist I just saw commented on the tremendous level of energy I’ve expended in trying to suppress my symptoms. I’ve started to imagine how I’d rather spend that precious energy…
Recently, I’ve been reminded of the power of writing, which I expect will help me better navigate the paradoxes I’m living with – working productively while beginning to prepare for the gradual transition to retirement ; dating and living alone; continuing to be creatively engaged with life, and slowing down my pace.
This is a time to lean into the questions, listen to hunches and explore dreams. Having been stripped of the illusion that I’ve got plenty of time, I’m starting to be more deliberate in how I choose to spend my time, energy and attention. This is a journal of sorts, written primarily to help illuminate my way going forward, but if you happen to stumble upon it in your blog travels, I hope it offers you an insight, some comfort, or maybe a laugh.