I was surprised to find recently that a high percent of those reading this blog are much younger than I. In fact, most are under 40. This really struck me. I had no idea.
Then I thought, what do these readers need most from me? Perhaps you would enjoy my perspective looking back over the decades of my life…
So I sat down and named the feelings behind the decades of my own life. Here you go:
My 20s: Pure Potential!
My 30s: Life as struggle
My 40s: Does this ever get better?
My 50s: Now this is living!
I can only now see that my own decades of struggle were absolutely necessary to provide me with a rich, creative, and authentic re-birth in midlife.
It now all seems like a jumble of struggles through college, graduate school, moving often from place to place, trying out many different types of work, friendships, lovers.
Throughout those years of learning about myself, what I needed most was a sense of reassurance that I would one day feel really good about my life.
The early decades are how we find out who we are, and where we fit into the scheme of things. We discover how our interests and natural abilities can be directed into some sort of paying job or career, and how to relate positively with others. These can be quite challenging times, requiring much personal strength and courage.
I kept a journal throughout these decades, and I’m so glad I did now! Sometimes I forget the various periods of confusion and hopelessness I faced in my past. Then I turn to these journals to confirm my deep sense of uncertainty and sometimes despair.
Who can provide much needed guidance as we struggle to make good choices throughout our lives? Who can we trust to have our best interests at heart?
We slowly find out who can be trusted, who has our best interests at heart, and who holds the kind of wisdom we seek.
I have found much wisdom in counseling and books, books by those who have been down this road before me. Books by those who have given careful thought to how life works. Those who have studied the different stages of life inside and out.
Someone like me, now!
“Only those who risk going too far, can possibly find out how far one can go…” – T.S. Eliot