My Second Half of Life

I read something not too long ago that made sense. It was a passage from a book, a gift I received many Christmases ago, and never opened. I finally opened that book as I was about to get rid of it. Here is the first thing that jumped out at me:

As we grow in age
we also grow in acceptance.
We see shades of gray
instead of black and white.
We become slow to condemn
and quick to forgive.

We do not rant and rave.
We do not complain and gripe.
Our heart has expanded with compassion
and is open to all people.

---The Sage's Tao Te Ching
A new Interpretation by William Martin

And then I noticed a little subtitle that read: Ancient advice for the second half of life.

And it hit me. I am in my second half of life.

How can that be when so many times I still feel like the scared kid who desperately wants to make her parents proud and impress her friends. Have I pleased them? Are they proud of who I have become? Is anyone impressed? Am I?

And so begins my blog.

2009 has been in many ways, a pivotal year for me. Why? I'm not sure. Nothing huge happened, no wedding, no exciting career change, no children were born. And yet, in the busyness of everyday life something extraordinary happened. My heart opened. I know when it happened. Backstage with the cast and crew at the UHS production of Annie. It began slowly in me. I went from "helping" backstage and feeling more "in the way" than of any use, to feeling a part of something. How a group of teenagers and their-not-much-older-than-that married directors had formed such a close knit bond in less than three months time, completely floored me. And yet, in less than three days, I began to feel the same bond. I felt like I was becoming a necessary and vital part of this wonderful group. This group of unlikely kids, who so quickly and solidly meshed to become a team. How cool. How awesome. How inspiring.

It started a change in me. I began to see things in shades of gray and not the black and white I have always been known for. I found compassion. I found energy. I found strength. I found inspiration. I found (a little more) patience. I found so much love. My eyes opened, and my heart opened.

I may be in my second half of life, but I still have no idea where I am going. In 2010 the possibilities are endless and I am open to wherever this journey takes me.