This morning I received an e – mail from a dear friend of mine. I met her over a decade ago and to this day I will never forget the vivid blue eyes, fixed on me as I delivered a seminar on Life Coaching. You know the feeling you get that, when you meet someone and from deep inside, whole- heartedly, you know that they are going to be in your life and have a profound effect on the choices you make.
She then became a client and we worked together to explore and reflect on her creativity, her relationships and what she wanted from the next chapter of her life, having recently had all her children leave home and her husband temporarily absent, whilst he battled successfully, with the notion of retirement.
For my entire life I have always aspired to being older, from a young age I remember getting a marker pen and drawing a cleavage on, which looked like I had spilled something down my front, but to me it signified being sexy and womanly. From around age 12, I didn’t look at the prettiest girls in school and wish for long straight blonde hair, but focused on changing my outfits to look more like the 30 something, cool mums, in my parents circle.
At our weekly sessions I would look at my blue eyed 50+, beautiful, wise friend and think to myself how exciting to know that one day when my children have grown up, just as they are leaving home, Andy and I will be also leaving the nest, to ride motorbikes through Mongolia, get caught in a Japanese blossom storm or be driving off -road for days, to find the prefect wave, etc, etc, etc…
Over the last 10 years my friend and I meet up to about twice a year to catch up on life and every time, it is filled with stories of her and her husband of 30 yrs, latest adventures, skiing in the dead of night, to cross the French border, biking, walking, hitchhiking around Japan and more recently, sadly and tenderly, supporting her own parents in preparing for their next chapter.
It is such a tremendous gift to have friends who are at a different age and a different place from you. The ones that inspire you, through their own life experiences, to preview forward to the exciting times that may lay ahead.
The last 10 years for me, have been an amazing decade of births, deaths and marriages, with a large portion of ‘extraordinary’ thrown in there for good measure and whilst my travelling companion may have exited a little early, my plans, for once my nest has emptied, have not changed.
So here are just a few things for me to begin mastering NOW, from my ready- to- role 50 +, empty nest, time to migrate, Andy Whitfield, legacy fulfilling, bucket list.
1.Ride and fix up a motorbike
2.change a tyre on any vehicle
3.Surf well enough to go anywhere and give it a try
4.Speaking fluent French and Spanish
5.Play the piano anyplace, anywhere
6.Painting confidently in oils
8.Write and photograph like a NG journalist
9.Able to build a fire anywhere
10.Have one grounding but powerful martial art under my black belt……..etc