So many women, friends and clients alike seem to be approaching 50 with a need for change in their hearts, minds, businesses and homes. It seems to be the age when we recognise that, if there is something that we haven’t done quite yet, the time is now.
Some are heading into this period with a new-found optimism, new dreams, freedom and a vision. I have friends who are going towards 50, starting new businesses, travelling to far flung places and although they have a mix of emotions, as their children are moving on, they are excited.
I meet them for lunch and their eyes are sparkling, their voices quick, they check their phones with an urgency and excitement. Not checking on the kids but their own projects. They walk with a purpose, they look fresh and fit and strong.
There is also pain
Some, however, are not in that place.
They are scared, the responsibility of the children is dwindling, they are heartbroken at their impending absence, They don’t know who they are anymore without them. Every last ounce of energy has gone into raising the children, making sacrifices and they are in the middle of or coming to the end of the teenager years which for some have been tricky and tiring and filled with anxiety.
We are overheating and overeating due to menopause. Many are beginning to see their parents are getting older, some are dealing with the loss of their parents and they are struggling to breathe in and out, never mind to thrive.
This is an interesting time for women. We are being heard in many places and many we are not. We are making steps forward with the “me too” campaign and then being slapped with a mocking president’s idiotic and dangerous rants, taking us back decades and we’re angry.
We are dealing with a cocktail of events and issues and downing cocktails to take away the pain.
The power of girlfriends.
I met with a group of girlfriends recently. It was one of those impromptu meetings, that was supposed to be a cup of tea for an hour and ended up being 6 bottles of prosecco and a deep, empowering, conversation that I will hold for a long time.
We were all at different stages, we were dealing with some of the toughest decisions and situations that we have faced. Real grown up stuff and we were a good combination of all that life can, throw at you, parenting problems, relationship issues, illness, bereavement and loss. We all cried at some point and there were moments when hands reached across tables and held on for dear life as we listened to each other.
There was loud, heartfelt laughter too, the laughter where you’ re holding yourself because it hurts so much. There was ridiculousness and hilarity and fun. There were happy tears where sad ones had previously fallen.
Our overall feeling was that despite everything life was throwing at us there was a calm, strong belief that we could handle it, that we would be ok, that we had each other.
A strength and acceptance that I think can only come when you are heading away from the age of 45.
I have noticed however, that unlike our younger years where we compare and compete and offer own stories, there was a deeper understanding and willingness to have the difficult conversations. There was a strength in the conversation, a unity, a bond. There was hope and optimism and love.
Where are you on this journey?
Wherever you are at this stage of life, I hope you are optimistic. I hope you are surrounding yourself with good women friends, maybe a bottle of prosecco or lots and lots of tea.
I hope you say out loud that you are struggling, worried, anxious, scared. I hope you are having the difficult conversations.
I hope too that you are talking about the things you haven’t done. The things you would like to try, the places you would like to visit, the books and films you would like to see.
I hope you are having huge conversations about booking your next fun thing.
I think for me this is what I love about heading towards the big 50. (It’s 3 years away)
Our lives are not instagrammable all the time.
They are messy, scary, fantastic, exciting, flipping awful, unbearable and confusing, bewildering, amazing and complicated.
If you are heading to the big 50 or 40 or 30 and need help to structure your next steps, book a consultation with me or gather some girlfriends and book a Happiness Workshop.
Let’s spend an evening together working out our next best step forward.
Tons of love to you all.
Go and make the most of your fabulous, wonderful, powerful self.
The time is now.