Sunday, February 19, 2017

Mid-Life Funk

 I am turning 58. Oh my gosh! My best years are now over!

It sounds extreme, doesn't it? But it's how I have been feeling lately.

I have always been a firm believer that age is only a number; however, turning 58 has stirred something up inside me, leaving me in a bit of a funk.

Could it be that I am going through a late stage mid-life crisis?

Or is it just an awakening to the true meaning of midlife?

I believe it's the latter.

In our younger years, my husband and I shared the belief that working hard and earning a good living would enhance the pursuit of happiness, for our children as well as ourselves. And now that we are empty-nesters, nothing makes us happier than to see both of our kids self-reliant, with great careers. So, in a sense, our belief did our family well.

But our mindset has since changed, and even though middle age can still present its financial challenges for some, our priority inevitably shifted from money to health concerns.

Fortunately, I have been blessed with excellent health so far. And I have never been more grateful for how life has afforded me the means to retire early and pursue my dreams. But with age comes the wisdom of knowing that money doesn't mean much if our health becomes compromised.

Having seen many develop health problems in my age group does scare me, making me realize that so many didn't get to reach 58, and so many won't get to reach 58. My mother died at 56. My brother died at the age of nine. So, intellectually, I know that I am grateful for life as it is, but when your body is in a funk, your body is in a funk. And many times, it defies explanation.

So what helps me lift this dark cloud?

My faith in God and humanity play significant roles.

Writing helps to free its hold over me.

Having people come alongside in a supportive, nonjudgmental way, who listen with an understanding ear, is very significant to me as well.

Exercise, lots of rest, and a well-balanced diet are also key factors that help me to get through my funk.

What about you? Do you find yourself in a funk these days?

If so, don't hide it. Talk about it. Write about it. Being vulnerable will help others know that they are not alone. But above all else, find the means that works best for you.

On the upside, the clouds have already lifted for me, and my fears of turning 58 have already subsided. Besides, 60 is the new 50 today, right?

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