I've been thinking long and hard as of late about a certain fact of life that is haunting some people I know -- an inescapable but frightening fact of life. I'm talking about getting old.
I am a 52 year-old woman. I have outlived my mother by four years and am approaching the age at which my father passed.
Yet I feel incredible!
I feel more incredible than I have in at least 20 years, and I am shouting that from every mountaintop I climb.
My journey into this new-found confidence and happiness began as I approached my fiftieth birthday. I realized I was not the woman I wanted to be; I was not the woman I knew my parents and children could be proud of, and I was the only one to blame. It was then that I decided I was the one who had to take the steps that would force me in the right direction.
And I did.
It's been a bumpy path, this one to self-respect and happiness, but it's gotten me back on the road I had ignored for so very long. Here are the things I've held close to my heart, and have learned lately.
Remember you are important, beautiful, flawed and perfect at the same time.
- Laugh at your mistakes, learn from them and move forward.
- Everyone else is walking their own path. You can hold their hand along the way, but we each have our own pace. (Some legs are longer than others.)
- Great things happen when you step outside your comfort zone. If you are unhappy with the direction your life has taken, you are the only one who can change it.
- Stay busy. Gather your friends around you and try things you have never done before.
- I've decided I don't care what other people think. Oh sure, I respect their opinions, their feelings and who they are, but I can't waste a minute worrying about how they feel about me. As long as I love myself, I can respect myself.
- In order to shake up your life, and squeeze the life out of every moment, you have to be able to say "yes". Say "yes" to your neighbor, your co-worker, your children and anyone else who invites you to step out of the box.
- Rest is NOT for the wicked. A healthy body begins with sleep. (And isn't that grand?)
- Your body really is your temple. Fill it with things that feed your soul and your mind.
Getting old doesn't scare me one bit. Cause frankly, it's a WHOLE lot better than the alternative.
Pfizer is dedicated to make sure that we can ALL work through the aging process with companionship and tools to live long, healthy, fulfilling lives. Join the conversation at GetOld.com, a site designed to both encourage you to think about your own perceptions of aging and to connect with people and their thoughts about it. You can share your opinions, listen to and read what others have to say and get tips and tools to make the process a little less scary.
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I received an email from my new (NEW) principal. They were interviewing for another second grade position on my new team, and would I like to be part of the interview team?
We worked in the same elementary school, had children that were close in age and had that unique ability to make each other laugh until we cried. That’s hard to find.
We’ve talked of fumbling tooth fairies, soccer and hockey teams, summer sports camps, strange childhood illnesses, prosthetic limbs, under-age drinking violations, birth control, college applications and what to do with a somewhat empty house. We’ve covered almost any parental topic available- and then some.
Most of our conversations over the years have certainly revolved around our children, but not anymore.
We’ve discussed several issues as of late that have forced us to look inside ourselves. They’ve ranged from painful divorce, mood swings, hot flashes and the big change. These discussions have been particularly difficult for a variety of reasons, but I think it’s because of this fact. Most women, at least the ones close to me, don’t always notice the changes that are occurring within themselves.
They don’t notice the anxiety level, the quick temper, and the mood swings that one would rather attribute to the post-teenage children that refuse to move out of the house. We’re finding that it’s not until someone who loves us points out the fact that others around us are suffering- and there’s no need for that to happen.
I had the ladies over for a luncheon several weeks ago so that we could all talk about what was happening as a group- instead of repeating the same conversation over and over with each friend. Apparently these symptoms are contagious- or we’re all the same age. Pick one.
We compared symptoms, complaints, doctor’s suggestions, great info we’ve gotten from resources that are both accurate and inaccurate. We simply believe the things we WANT to believe, and smile.
We all agreed on one thing- that we are in charge of how we feel, and that we need to take the proper steps in helping us all enjoy this next incredible part of our journey. We need to celebrate the fact that we are still here to enjoy it- and help ourselves feel awesome.
While we shared info about prescriptions that were helping, we also shared what products were helping us with our changing bodies. I was so excited to tell them about what Poise is offering, and they are excited to begin helping themselves feel better. The Poise brand’s revolutionary new feminine wellness line currently includes five products to help with the symptoms of menopause. Two that my friends and I will be looking for are the Roll-On Cooling Gel that will help us feel comfortable and refreshed when a hot flash strikes or alternatively, the Body Cooling Towelettes. These feature a portable, re-sealable package. They’re going to be easy to use anywhere we go.
We cared so much about our bodies (inside and out) when we were 16 – and we should care even more now that we’re, um, well, older than that.
Sometimes, we just need a gentle reminder.
Poise brand wants to help women approach this life stage with confidence by being the first to start The 2nd Talk, a whole new way to talk about menopause and other wellness issues for women over 40 and introducing a new, first-of-its-kind line of over-the-counter menopause products designed to work naturally with her body and provide comfort from symptoms.
Poise wants to rally 1 million women to pledge to have The 2nd Talk by World Menopause Day on October 18. Join the conversation at The2ndTalk.com.
We left the luncheon feeling that we were not alone; and proud that we had pledged to each other that we were important enough to help ourselves.
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Today I am going to remember the lessons I’ve learned, and I’m going to try to follow my own advice.
Thanks to Sassy and her pesky little appendix, I spent last weekend in the Urgent Care Center, the Emergency Room and a lovely room at the top floor of the local hospital.
This weekend Bitchy planned another kind of weekend for this mother.
Remember last year? Well, the girls have planned to kidnap the moms again. They've planned for us to see this particular band, see these particular sights, and spend an inordinate amount of time searching for great photo ops. ("Mom, if you say Sugarloaf ONE MORE TIME, you are NOT coming to the concert.")
I'll also get to see Clyde, who has something cool planned for us.
If are in the area- give us a shout. We'll be the moms who will be desperately trying to keep up with the daughters. (And we'll try to look @(#* good doing it...)
Here's a taste....enjoy...
And THIS year? It's Yeah for the girls....yeah for the girls indeed.
I laughed as I walked to my car.
I like to think I'm charming. (Easily distracted...spontaneous...talkative...they're charms, right?)
(Oh sure, it's a repost, but we're still recovering from Sassy's appendectomy, more trips to D.C., and my project called "Say Yes to Everything". And THAT is what the pic at the top is for. Frankly, it's disausting.)
Sometimes, it feels like things are back to almost back to normal. (Except I never really know what normal IS.)
(It's a repost, I know. Forgive me..I'm trying to finish other writing projects that I promised myself I would finish this summer...and you know what I'm talking about...and I might be busy doing other things....but we'll chat about that later....)
(It's a repost, but connected so well to the memories I stole back last weekend..can't stop thinking about it..)