“It takes a very long time to become young.” ~ Pablo Picasso
Another 70-something birthday is saying hello to me in a few weeks, and as I try to process how fast this year has flown by, one of my many noisy inner voices stands up and says:
“Hello, universe. Are you kidding me? Is this some kind of bad joke? Where did the time go? What happened? On the inside, I’m a playful, free-spirited, creative, curious, introspective, and empathic child who still has big dreams she is reaching for. How do I make peace with the person I see in the mirror? How do I accept the elusiveness of time?”
In retrospect, I probably asked myself some of the same questions when I was a college student, a young mom, turned middle age, and then graduated into post-menopausal status. Now, here I go again. Like a toddler, I’m flailing my arms, stomping both feet, dragging my body on the floor, and screaming, “No. Not yet. I’m not ready for changes.”
Thankfully, the voice of my wise inner guru always knows what to say to calm me down. Flow with the cycles of life. Move into each age and stage with ease and grace.
Thank you, wise inner guru. I vow to turn over a new leaf.
Seventy-plus Years of Wisdom
There are times when we feel like we’re in the middle of a positive personal growth transformation, and there are times when we feel like we’ve taken 200 steps backwards. Both situations are transformational. The shadow and the light. The hard and the easy.
When you feel that you’ve grown and shifted for the better, take a few moments to acknowledge yourself and think about how far you’ve come and the courage, persistence, and strength it has taken to get there.
When you mess up and feel like you’ve gone backwards, offer yourself a megadose of patience, compassion, love, understanding, and kindness.
Living life is like an intricate jigsaw puzzle. We are clear about certain pieces and where they belong and unclear about the rest. The magic of life is hidden in the mystery of not knowing every detail in advance.
Life does not always make sense.
There are times when it feels like your life is breaking apart into little pieces and you can’t find a way to glue it all together. That’s when the mantras of persistence, strength, and courage call your name. Stand tall. You are stronger than you believe.
I’d like to tell you that I have reached Nirvana in my ripe old age, but it’s not true. Perhaps we never fully reach enlightenment. Just when we think we are illuminated and at peace, something rocks our world that forces us to take a harder look at ourselves and question whether we’ve learned anything at all.
There is a parable about how many times we are allowed to learn one of life’s lessons. Mess up once? That’s okay. Mess up on the same life lesson twice? That’s okay, too. Three times? Same lesson? Like baseball, three times and you’re out.
It takes a lifetime to learn certain lessons, and sometimes we never learn them. That said, I don’t think you are ever “out.” We are all human and perfectly imperfect.
Perfection is boring anyways. Coloring outside the lines, needing to redo parts of our lives, forgiveness, humility, and honoring the rich fabric of the ups and downs of our lives is my personal definition of success.
Every big and small win counts. Accept the muck, the chaos, and the unknown, and at the same time, embrace every day as your birthday. Each moment is a new beginning and an opportunity to open yourself to the intimacy and intricacy of life.
New Beginnings and Healing Affirmations
>> I discard comparisons, should-haves, and could-haves.
>> I breathe in acceptance, grace, gratefulness, and unconditional love.
>> I move beyond the negative energy of regret and make a mindful choice to live a joyful present and a healthy future.
>> I release the past, focus on the big and small moments of joy and hope, and keep moving forward, no matter what.
>> I am grateful for both the good times and bad. Difficult people have taught me how not to be. Challenging situations have shown me that I am stronger than I could ever imagine.
What is your favorite positive affirmation and shared wisdom, dear reader? I’d love to hear from you in this one community of love.
For last year’s life wisdom birthday article, “Seven Life Changing Lessons to Learn from a 70-Something.”
“Everyone we meet along the way becomes our seed of inspiration. Yes, even the people that hurt us. Especially them. They teach us how not to be.” ~ from my book, Heart-Dreamer: Stepping into Life, Love, Creativity and Dreams No Matter What