“You are three strong women who are both nurturing and courageous and that has been such an inspiration for me.”
Recently, I was looking at old pictures with my friend Susan. We have been friends since college and I mentioned when looking at old photos that I looked better than I remembered. “Yes, me too,” said Susan. “I was pretty cute back then. Why didn’t I think so at the time?”
As I turn 65 this year, my mother has been gone for 17 years. Yet, I still feel her presence in my life in many ways. Also, as time passes, I come to have more appreciation for her and a better understanding of her ways.
Do you have a checklist in your mind that ticks off what counts? I do. It’s a proverbial one.
Let’s see, I get a point for working long hours, another point for making money, a point for having a day when I did not overeat and did my exercises. I get points for visiting a sick person, but not as many as I do when I get a new job contract, especially one that affords status.
This year, my husband of 34 years and I both turned 64. We got cards for each other with the iconic Beatles song that said, “Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m sixty-four?” I could not help but reflect on how we both survived.
Funny thing. I have wanted to write this blog for several months and couldn’t seem to get started. No surprise, it is about facing something in ourselves, limitations that stop us from doing what we most want to do. The metaphor of a glass ceiling is quite apropos.
As I sit here, feeling cozy back at home, my mug says “Alaska, the last frontier.” I am trying to keep the spirit of the amazing month of July alive in my thoughts.
I am not the only person I know in my sixties who had a bad work experience at the end of their career. One friend was in his hospital bed after cancer surgery when his boss told him he was being forced to retire. Another friend worked for years as a successful paramedic and was then given the worst shifts in attempts to squeeze him out.
My father turned 90 in May. We had a small birthday party at his house, which I filmed on my phone. He was blowing out candles on a cake, although he could not eat the cake. He has a feeding tube and has not eaten normally for over 20 years, since his last cancer surgery.