You spent your life working hard, doing everything you could for your family. It wasn’t easy, but you knew it was up to you to keep things moving forward.
I’m talking right now to you professional women in your late 40’s and early 50’s. You did it all, everything you could to have a good career, a nice home, a loving marriage and happy children.
And now you are tired … mentally, physically, and emotionally.
In this stage of life, you are dealing with the realization that your youth is gone. You look in the mirror, do your best to make yourself look alive, squeeze into clothes that used to make you feel sexy and smart but lately just feel all wrong, and drag yourself out the door.
You’re bored. In the bedroom and in the boardroom, you are filled with thoughts of the past and “what if’s” and “what’s next” and you imagine running away, starting your own business, traveling. You are tired of juggling everything for everyone else.
In this stage of life, you are dealing with fear. Fear that you may have walked the wrong path, that you did it all for security and not for purpose or passion, fear that your time is running out. You feel like there is something else, something more that you are meant to contribute in this lifetime but you are afraid to uncover the layers you’ve built around yourself, afraid to let go of the mask that you clutch to your face. Afraid that revealing that vulnerability would cause everything to come crashing down around you. Fear.
In this stage of life, you are reminded daily of the decisions you made 5, 10, 20 years ago. The career you chose. The man you married. The children you had or didn’t have. The money you never saved. The vacations you never took. You worry how many more years might be left. You wonder if you still have a chance to be something, do something, make an impact on this world before there are no more years left. You feel like something is calling to you, something deep, something spiritual, calling you to AWAKEN!!
This stage of life is less about getting promotions and more about watching loved ones battling cancer, getting divorced, losing their jobs, losing everything. It’s a stage where the time and effort you’ve put in feels lost, exhausting, wasted.
It’s a stage where you are questioning your life and searching for a parachute to take you away.
It’s a stage where you are struggling with meaning, asking yourself “Why am I here? Is there something more I should be doing with my life?”
It’s a stage where you realize that you look older, much older. Men are looking at you differently now and you try to remember the last time you got a “look” that said, “you still have it”. And even though you never thought about it much when you had “it”, you are suddenly both sad about losing “it” and just over “it”.
It’s a stage of life where you realize that the things you thought were so important for all those years, just aren't. You look back on all the time you spent worrying, juggling, racing. You just want to stop! You fantasize about selling everything, quitting your job, quitting this life and traveling to a place you've never been to do something you've never done. Something that means something.
You feel like time is running out.
So….what do you need to do?
You need to stop.
You need to stop doing anything that’s not important to you.
You need to de-clutter your life, clean out the closets, throw out the junk, give away everything you don't need, lighten your load and start making some changes, maybe one at a time but let people know that this is YOUR LIFE and you want to live it your way.
You need girlfriends.
You need a tribe of women that understand you, women that you can get real with, get vulnerable with, hug and love on each other like sisters, cry out the bad shit with and cry in the good vibes with … together.
You need to expand your mind, you need some peace and quiet and time to think things through. You need to be with others who have been there and have done that. You need women who can reassure you that you AREN’T crazy and that you deserve this time, that there is something more and that you deserve it and that there is a higher purpose.
You need to take back your moments, breathe, feel your heart and the sun on your face. You need to look up and look inside and give thanks for this beautiful gift called life.
You need to raise your expectations … then raise them again.
You need to lower the noise. Lower the chaos. Remove the drama.
You need to remember that you are worth it, that you are needed in God’s big plan, that you have important work to do. You need to remember what you forgot and learn to listen to that voice inside you. You already know. Trust that thing inside, it will never steer you wrong.
You need to know gratitude, no matter what else is going on you need to see the blessings.
You need to stop worrying about where the money will come from and start remembering that all you are meant to receive will come. You need to realize that you never had control, you only had choices.
You need to pray for guidance, pray for faith, pray for the ability to receive and for the strength to walk the path despite fear. You need to let Jesus take the wheel knowing that He always had it no matter how hard you tried to control your life.
You need to stand up for yourself. You need to give yourself the time to figure things out, to figure out how you want to spend the rest of your life, get clear on the memories you want to create so when you’re sitting in your rocking chair at the end of your life you are smiling.
Finally, and maybe most importantly, you need to remember that ...
… this stage of life can be beautiful if you give yourself the gift of living it deeply. Like, really really beautiful. It’s the stage where your children become parents and you’re given the most wonderful gift … grandbabies. They run to you, jump into your lap to snuggle.
It’s the stage where you get to see Christmas, Halloween and Easter through your grandchild’s eyes, and it’s so much more fun and magical then you remember with your own children. It’s the stage where you get to watch your children be parents…and they’re really good at it. It’s such a great stage.
It’s the stage where you get to choose a new truth if you want to. You get to take a hard look at the life you lived, you get to decide if you would have done things differently. You get to redefine yourself and if you’re very lucky you will get to live like you were dying.