I sit here staring out my office window at the bare trees swaying in the cold wind that foretells winter.
Rather than fret about the upcoming snow and ice and down-to-the-bone bitterness, I’m surprised at how peaceful I feel with the changing season. After all, I’ve never been a big fan of winter.
But this morning I can tell that something new has taken hold. I’m learning to embrace life, to accept rather than resist.
God knows I’ve spent plenty of time resisting.
Pushing against life.
Defending my position.
Bracing for the worst.
Not as much anymore. As I think about my life, I have such appreciation for the gift of experience – our greatest teacher.
With enough years under my belt, I realize that so many of the things I used to worry about no longer hold the same weight. As hard as loss is, I know I can survive the pain. As much as I’d like to think I can control life, I’m learning to soften and accept the things I can’t change. And I’ve come to understand that every rejection really is God’s protection. The friend who chose a different path or the exciting project that fell through were simply life’s way of steering me toward something better.
I’m also grateful to realize that I’ve amassed enough history to know that 95% of the worst-case scenario movies I produced in my head never hit the big screen of life. I now catch myself in preproduction and change the storyline .
It feels good to notice these changes, to name the benefits of growing older. Because there are many – solid trust in my intuition, wise discernment about people and opportunities, and the ease with which the word “no” tumbles from my lips.
It’s true. Saying no really does get a lot easier with age.
So this morning, I sing the praises of conscious aging because I think it’s an important message. In a culture that constantly invites us to drink from the fountain of youth, I’m happy to sip from the reservoir of experience
P.S. – Please consider giving a copy of Waking Up in Winter: In Search of What Really Matters at Midlife, to those loved ones who are in transition and want to know they’re not alone. You can learn more, here.
P.S.S. – There will be no Facebook Live this week. You can watch past sessions on my YouTube channel at CherylRichardsonTV here.
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