I guess with the coming of my 45th birthday (January 13) , I have to officially embrace “middle age”. Content with the idea of making it to 90, I’m marking this as the midway point of my human journey. Along with this acceptance is the challenge to embrace all that goes along with the middle age package – 10 extra pounds that seemed to show up out of nowhere and that seem to want to stay, lines and wrinkles, sagging skin, greying and sometime thinning hair. If that weren’t bad enough….there is the lovely gift of perimenopause. Ahhhhh 45. I would be tempted to indulge a few days of self-pity if this hadn’t been an amazing and wonderful week. Instead, I welcome 45 as an opportunity to enter into a fantastic second half of my life anc chuckle at the timing of the universe.
In the week of my 45th birthday, many new things have taken place. I opened my office for the possibility of contemplative community. I welcomed several new clients while cherishing the return of others. And…..on Sunday, January 17th, PBS will air their piece on Reiki and the Catholic Chuch, in which I was one of the interviewees. Oh yea….then there is that book thing that is hanging out there in the ether, awaiting the next step in the editing/publishing process in the hopes of succeeding in the targeted fall release. It seems the universe has placed a lot of eggs in the basket of my 45th year. While there is a strange feeling of trepidation over all of these changes, I also feel a deep sense of accomplishment and not just a little bit victorious. Recalling the Virginia Slims ads of the 1970’s I feel as if ” I have come a long way baby.”
While reaching middle age might tempt some to entertain regret, all I can do is look back in wonder. While mistakes have been made and painful lessons learned, all this has served to help me peel back the layers of woundedness and ego so that in my 45th year, I feel I can present my truest self (as least to the extent that I know her today). I feel as if terrible burdens have been lifted and the armor with which I have protected my vulnerable truths has been set aside. While I know there is still much growth to accomplish, I feel pretty content with who I am in this body. While I’m not quite willing to wholeheartedly embrace those extra 10 pounds (DAMN those fashion magazines!), I am happy to nurture my introvert, indulge my writer, entertain my muse, celebrate my rage, comfort my perfectionist, soothe my broken heart, name and claim my truth and stand in the knowledge of my gifts. And most importantly, as I face the terror of seeing myself on TV (what if they screwed it up? What if people don’t like me? What if I look fat? What if I sound stupid? etc. etc. etc.), I am reminded that I am not in charge! God has brought me to this place, and I am totally aware that God has been in charge of this PBS thing……so I surrender to this as just another example of God’s timing.
To quote Ecclesiastes and the 60’s folk group, The Byrds:
“To everything, Turn, Turn, Turn,
There is a season, turn turn turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven.”