Wednesday, April 02, 2008

So now, what?

As Judy said leaving lunch the other day, "I just need to figure out how I want to spend my 40s." Although now for me, it's my 50s. And I'm already one year in. Today I'm 51. More funny to me, than upsetting. Like, "how'd that happen?!!!" "How'd I get here?" But I did. And thankfully, happily, it's been swell.

So what next? This whole year has been a continuation of engagement with an eye towards evolution. How to get clearer? More focused? More responsible financially? More in control of my time and energy? More fierce in my decisions? More in tune with what matters most to me? Those are the decisions. Those are the challenges. I feel the movement, little by little, though it's far from clear and defined. I'm feeling the movement, right on time I suppose. Now 51, my littlest finishing up high school. I'm sensing change all around me as well. People surprising me with their lurches...oh, not fair to call them lurches...with their evolutions too. It's false to assume the world is solid while you're changing. Everyone's changing. Some moments more than others.

A young friend brought tears to my eyes today as he spoke of the possibility of of retiring his dream. He had to. He's right, the world is changing in a way that probably can't sustain his vision. But he's great, and talented, and though I know better, though I was in fact moved by his tough honesty, part of me lurched, "no, no, no, not you! You can't throw in the towel. It's too sad, too devastating, it's been too long." But he's right to reassess, to consider the harsh realities. It's part of what makes him so special, rather than deluded, arrogant and annoying. But I can't bear the thought of him not creating. And I don't think he can live without creating either.

So what do we do with our dreams? How interesting that I've gotten to this age without the harshness overwhelming? But now the world is changing all around. I've been talking about my place in this world all my life. So what now, when the stakes are even higher and, to use a tired old cliche, the road rougher?


Melissa said...

happy birthday janet! loved this post, and have been thinking through much the same things, though for me, its the thirties to decide what to make of...

Sheree Rensel said...

So ahhh....Is there some mystical switch we have on our bodies or brains that isn't publicized because we need to find it for ourselves? I smirked and laughed at your description of becoming 51. I could have written those words. Everything was the same for me. I have a few years on you. I am 54. I started my quest for focus, financial responsibility, and accounting for time/energy back a couple of years ago.
I have alluded to these issues on my own blog and even today commented on another blog in which I posed a question akin to "What and where is my place in the next 25 years of the art "world"?
So maybe this is in our DNA. As soon as you turn 50, there is a life review, a crazy attempt to grasp for straws, and then, a mad dash to the finish line.
Hey! It's possible!
Love your blog!