At age sixty, I felt as if I stepped across a threshold into an entirely new world of my own creation.
I was energized by an infusion of possibilities and opportunities after my bout with Identity Crisis Syndrome in my late fifties.
I still had not fully answered the question “Who Am I Now?” but I was starting to figure it out.
There is something incredibly significant about turning sixty.
The number sixty is a measure of time and progress. There are 60 seconds in each minute and 60 minutes in each hour. We identify with fast cars that go from ‘zero to 60’ in a boasted time.
When I was young and impatient to grow older and more independent, time seemed to move excruciatingly slow.
As I evolved through my twenties, thirties, and forties, I was always trying to stretch time to pack in more ‘doing’. I was always “on the clock” trying to accomplish some goal or milestone.
In my fifties, I started to realize that ‘being’ was...
My fourth decade began in 1994. If you read my previous blog; The Decade I Balanced in Three Inch Heels: My THIRTIES, you know that I became an accidental entrepreneur in 1989.
Without forethought, experience, or any specific plan, I started a chemical business from my dining room table, with the belief that it was just a temporary thing to support my family.
Fast forward, five years passed and those were tough, grueling years which forced me to grow by leaps and bounds, in skills, confidence, resilience and stick-to-itiveness.
What was I thinking? I chose a business in an industry dominated by a closed club of men, tenured career professionals and science types. They were a hard drinking, tough talking, deal making on the golf course clique.
The initial years were like drinking from the proverbial firehose. Often, I simply got soaked, knocked down and left dripping on the outside of their fire circle.
I stuck out like a manicured thumb with glitter polish.
Fortunately, I came...
My third decade began in 1984 while I was employed in the executive and corporate aviation world. The culture and personalities of this micro industry taught me a great deal about what to do and what not to do to advance my career and dodge trouble.
I learned many skills including how to recite the aviation alphabet and hold my liquor like one of the boys. We worked hard and we played hard and for sure, today, many of the then accepted practices and behaviors would be forbidden. Let me just say the #MeToo club had lots of members.
My thirties were a very pivotal time in my identity development. This decade included my second divorce and my third marriage. I expand on this in the chapter "Serial Wife". in my book.
This decade was also the beginning of my education in the chemical industry, and a discovery I had an affinity to sales and marketing because of my fascination with the uniqueness and motivations of people.
Initially, I was terrified at the prospect of convincing...
Why does the word ‘retired’ irritate me?
I suppose it is because as a child in the boomer generation, I was indoctrinated that I was so damn lucky to live in a society that planned for my obsolescence.
Success had been defined for me as the privilege of stepping off the stage and out of the spotlight to make room for the next generation. Like an aging actor, I would be thanked for my service and ushered to a back seat to watch my understudies take over.
That was the part I was handed - but I went off script and refused to leave the stage!
At age 65, by definition in the retirement play book of 21st century North America, I have already retired and unretired multiple times.
Each time I have reached the point of ‘enough!’ of a role, or I feel that I can no longer grow in that identity, I chose to bring that part to a close; retire from it, and audition new roles, stages and experiences.
Only by trying out new roles, and testing...