Do you ever find yourself – feel yourself – transforming before your eyes?
(And by yourself – of course – I mean myself.)
Perhaps it’s a slow recognition. Or a sudden realization. What used to matter, doesn’t. New things – new ideas – do. Or maybe it’s a chance encounter with a new version of you. Maybe after many long years of becoming – you finally do – become, that is. An evolution of all the yous you used to know, used to be, or used to define yourself as. All together, all of you, gathering in one room.
Maybe suddenly you understand how (and why) to walk into today with exactly the person you are right now at this morning’s moment. Open to and energized for whatever you need, want, wish, dream, feel, hope, imagine, and choose. Maybe today’s the day you remember what’s good for you and proceed gently, lovingly, respectfully.
Or it could be the new knowledge that today’s steps, however small they may be, will lead to tomorrow’s and whatever’s next. That life is about building – and sometimes tearing down and starting over – but mostly building on all of the people you’ve been.
Or maybe you just got a good night’s sleep and you feel simply more capable in your own skin.
Whatever hard corners and angles I once wore, I now wear softer and rounder.
I move more slowly. Carefully. I am more likely than ever before to look before leaping.
Where once I wanted to be thin, I now want health, stability, flexibility and resilience.
I will admire my body. Honor it. Tend it. Feel for the wonder of it over the weight of it. The strength over the shape.
I will walk it, dress it comfortably, feed it well. I will listen carefully to my body, and respond as though I heard very clearly whatever it’s trying to say. I will rest when it’s weary. I will be faithful to its needs. Encourage its efforts. Lovingly accept its limitations. Kindly thank it for its service.
There’s hope in loving who I am. In accepting all I am now over whomsoever I will never be again.
Growing is growing – especially if it’s growing older.
Turning sixty wasn’t as bad as the anticipation of turning sixty. Or maybe now that it finally came and went – my biggest birthday ever, I mean – maybe being sixty is not as bad as the anticipation of being sixty. A mere flip of the page on the calendar. Sunday to Monday. July 10th to the 11th. Fifty-nine to sixty.
Still the same me.
All those years, one added to the next, equal a living sum of who I am right now. Shy. Curious. Loyal. Sensitive. Sometimes weepy or worried. Strong, but anxious. Always hopeful.
Devoted to love in just about any form I find it.
Six decades of learning.
I suppose I thought I’d be wiser in the whys of the world. After all this time. All of my experiences. Relationships. Mistakes. Do-overs and never-agains. After mothering and daughtering. Sistering. Friending. I was a teacher. Still a wife, full to the tippity-top with love for my husband. Role after role, day in and year out.
Turns out, what I know best – now – is me.
It sounds strange to say, “I like me.” But I do. And I guess it took adding up all of those years to be able to say those words and mean them.