While trying to fall asleep last night my mind was wandering in my past, playing memories like a movie of my late husband, Richie and my deceased dad, Edgar. While I lied there I was both smiling and tearing about my memories and missing them both. I fell asleep to the movie of these two men. When I awoke this morning I knew what my blog would be about this week. I realized these two men and others in my life were never meant to be present for my entire life, but merely seasons.
Spring is a time of birth and growth. I believe when we are born we start our spring. From birth until the age of 18 we start to grow like leaves on a tree. During this time most of us have people in place to keep us safe and cared for while we develop skills to take care of ourselves. We are full of curiosity and we are easily molded during this time. Depending on the journey and purpose meant for us. Certain people enter and leave our life to help mold us into the people we are meant to be. I believe this is why scars created during childhood run deep and stay with us our entire lives. They are meant to help us learn and grow. Some of us will have to learn and grow more than others.
Summer is a time of blossoming and adventure. From the ages of 18 into our 40s most of us will take risks and challenge ourselves. This time is all about us. We try to figure out what we want to do and who we want to be with. As I woman I knew I wanted to be a wife and a mother. I so needed to break free from the co-dependent relationship I had with my mother. I took a risk and joined the Navy. This decision would end up affecting the direction of my life. I would meet my husband and subsequently give birth to a beautiful daughter. Because of the scars of childhood I was a strong woman with a very hard exterior. My greatest challenge was discovering I was vulnerable like everyone else. It would take decades to discover this about myself.
After all the activity and fun of summer it is time to slow down and prepare for fall. Fall is a time when the trees shed their leaves and animals prepare for winter. Grass becomes dormant and flowers die until the next spring. Fall is a time to slow down, rest and reflect. I believe our fall starts in our fifties. I have found this a time of great growth and reflection. Losing my husband forced me to really look inside myself and discover a softer side, a more vulnerable side. I was forced to really search inside for the woman I wanted to be and the legacy I wanted to leave. When I was in my summer I saw most issues as black and white. I find now most issues are gray. Every person has a story and a journey. With social media we become quick to judge merely by one sound bite. This is not the person I strive to be. I try to look past the sound bite of a person and see who they are and why they do what they do. It is not easy and I still stumble and will revert to a quick judgement. I have an affirmation at my computer I see every morning, “Was I better today than I was yesterday?” That is all any of us can do.
In a few short months I will be celebrating my 60th birthday. I believe I truly am in the fall of my life. It is a bit unsettling, but it also feels freeing. When I look back at my 60 years I can clearly see what I have learned, both good and bad, from all the people that have entered and exited my life. Each person had a purpose to share or teach me something. It was up to me to store the information each relationship gave me. I am sure I missed a few messages along the way.
What I know for sure during the fall of my life is I am truly blessed and I try to stay in the moment as much as I can. I truly enjoy each day George is in my life as I feel he is a big gift sent to me. His son lights up my world every time he walks in the room and my daughter is a shining star. She is truly my greatest accomplishment in my life. She is in her summer and she is a risk taker. If I had anything to do with that, my life has had great meaning.
I will continue to enjoy the fall of my life and I am sure my final chapter will have blessings and special people as well. What I want for anyone reading this is to enjoy each season of your life and don’t be sad when a person leaves your life, but be glad they shared it, even if it was only for a short period of time.