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Friday, November 8, 2013

See Beautiful: It's Been Beautiful Being 55!

In a couple of weeks I'll be turning 56. I'll be kind of sad to not be 55, because being 55 has been a lot of fun. Many wonderful things happened in my life and in my family this year. It's been a year of healing my spirit, exploring new and old interests, and waking up each morning thinking 'what fun things will I do today?!'

Here are a few of the reasons this has been serene and happy year:

Retirement: I loved teaching and derived great satisfaction from it for many years. But frankly the last few years had been so stressful and so damaging to my self-worth that it was wonderful to retire in February. In spite of being an effective educator (dept. chair and AP teacher), the insults and verbal and emotional mistreatment finally became more than I could process. Since then the peace and routine of home and family have done much to erase the hurts and restore my confidence.

Grandmotherhood: I know, that's not a word, but maybe it should be. What a gift it's been to get to spend lots of time with my grandchildren, having them living nearby!  I get to spoil them terribly and  revel in feeling that we really know each other.

Motherhood: Ok, yes, all three of the kids are adults now. But - the pride I felt at Kevin's college graduation! The pleasure of sitting by the campfire with Amber and Billy! Taking John and Lauren out to eat after John's graduation from seminary! Matinees with Kevin in May, midweek lunches with one or the other of my daughters, and teasing with everyone over family fantasy football…so many small treasures of time.

Drawing and Blogging: I used to love drawing when I was much, much younger. Before husband, kids, grad school, career. Now I have time to explore drawing and painting again. Blogging gives me another outlet for fun and creativity, allowing me to share my passion for wildlife and be silly with poetry and photo editing.

When I turned 30, then 40, I could have never imagined enjoying being so OLD as 55! As Bonnie Raitt sings, 'those lines are pretty hard to take when they're staring back at you'. Still, I'm so grateful  to have had this year. It really has been beautiful being 55. 

Age 56 has a tough act to follow. 


Molly The Wally said...

I think there is nothing truer than the saying you are as old as you feel. Feel young stay young. Happy Birthday and we can see you have so many wonderful life experiences and so many more to come. Have a fabulous Friday.
best wishes Molly

Oz theTerrier said...

It seems 55 has given you a lot of Beautiful memories! I hope 56 will do the same!
Have a wonderful weekend.

Golden Woofs! SUGAR said...

55 is a great age = lucky 10. My mom can relate on being an educator, the stress it too much. When you get older you see/view things in a different way. Exploring previous hobbies is Beautiful. Golden Thanks for sharing and Happy Seeing Beauty. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

Anonymous said...

My favorite saying are as old as you feel. I turned 50 this year, but I don't feel that old. Well.....mostly. LOL I'm sure 56 is going to be even better for you. You have so many things to look forward to.

Anonymous said...

That's really a beautiful post. I'm always a little grumpy for getting older and older, but after reading your post I feel a little better - Thanks

Rebekah said...

Such an inspiring post. Love it!

Lydia Criss Mays said...

Oh, Happy Birthday! It was special to see you celebrating and sharing more beautiful! What a great gift to be so close to friends and family. Sending see beautiful thoughts your way!


tubby3pug said...

This post makes me so happy! You look so gorgeous and joyful in that picture with your grand daughter (Also way younger then 55!) Ihad a bit of a break down when I turned 35 last year, I just felt OLD! I felt like time was moving so fast, my dogs are old, and I felt like my youth was just winding to a close. Plus my dad passed at 66 so I missed him and also felt my own mortality for the first time. Gradually Ive realized 35 has been a great age, they are all good ages. I am always looking for role models for growing older and you are a great example.

I also feel for your teaching situation. I am a special education teacher and I love the students but the job has become massively stressful. The kids are supposed to do academics and the common core standards as opposed to life skills and the new evaluation system means I am observed 6 times a year, at least according to a super elaborate general education rubric. Not adapted for special ed. Its a disaster. I find myself wishing for retirment (sorry this comment turned into a novel)

urban hounds

coffeedog said...

i'm right behind you. i will turn 54 next month. happy birthday to us! the 50's is a good decade, although when i sit and think about it, i kinda get a little freaked out as to how "old" i'm getting; mainly because in my head, i'm still 35. lol.
life is good has the perfect slogan:
do what you like. like what you do.
and it sounds like you are doing exactly that.
wags, bailey unleashed

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