This is a milestone birthday for me – I just turned 60. It isn’t my most difficult birthday. In fact, I am finding the whole idea very exciting. As you may know, I started the Sixty in the City blog when I was only 58 – I called it Sixty in the City (well almost). This week I dropped the (well almost). That year I also decided to grow my hair so that I would have the longest, blondest hair ever for my sixtieth birthday. I am having fun! My life ranges from very serious (my work, my activism and my health) to frivolous joy.
The most difficult birthday for me was my 28th and it really knocked me for a loop. I cried constantly it seemed. I called my Mom (who is 35 years older than me) and told her my life was flashing before my eyes and before I knew it I would be 68. It all sounds ridiculous to me today but I was one very unhappy camper.
The truth is it was a difficult time. I was very unhappy in my marriage – a relationship I had been in since before my 17th birthday, finances were very tight and my precious daughters were very little (my youngest was 6 months and my oldest was 3 years). I was teaching both days and evenings and my in-laws had moved to town (a whole other story). So much responsibility and I just couldn’t find the Light.
How far I have come! I feel like I am in a place where I am living authentically and when something doesn’t feel good, I can leave it behind. I am choosing to walk my own path. I have finally learned the power of saying NO! And that is a very big step.
I am sixty and maybe you are turning 30 or 35 or 45 or 50……………it is significant and we need to honour it. I believe it is very important to ask ourselves, “Am I happy? Is this the right path for me? Should I make a change?”
Making changes in our life can be a real challenge and choosing those choices even more difficult. For me, it is imperative to assess my priorities – what gives me satisfaction, what is important to me, what fills me up and what am I doing that does not resonate.
Money is not my first priority but there is a certain level of financial security that I require and I am more than willing to work to achieve that goal. I love time with my daughters and with my grandson – this time is so precious and makes me really happy – doesn’t matter if we are just at home, in a local park, running errands – being with my family is so satisfying. I love to travel but I don’t require a 5 star hotel or a cruise ship. I was a travel agent years ago and had ample opportunity to experience both. I am very lucky to have friends living in many areas of the world and sometimes I stay with them but often choose an inexpensive hostel, airbnb or a simple hotel.
Planning my summer vacation, I knew I wanted to swim in salt water so I first looked for the closest body of salt water to Toronto. New York seems to be it. Do you realize you can take a bus to New York for as little as $10 each way? I found a price of $66 return for the dates that I wanted. I asked a friend if she would like to travel with me and then we chose an AirBnb in a town along the coast just a couple of hours from New York City. The house is a block from the beach with rave reviews and the host supplies beach chairs, beach towels and umbrellas for only $60 for the room per night ($30 each). So this holiday will cost me around $200 for 5 nights. The real bonus here is that I have to be in the area anyway the week after to begin my training as a Jewish Priestess.
Food is really important to me as well. I am committed to eating healthy and I do like to cook my own food. I have blogged often about food and shopping on a budget. I love seafood but I am happy to buy a lobster for under $20 and eat it on the beach or at home. I won’t be more satisfied having this meal in a restaurant. I love having people in my home and cooking for them but I also don’t mind having a potluck party- always delicious.
Health is a big priority and I have been spending money each month on Traditional Chinese Medicine. It has been very healing for me and I do wish it could be of our medical system in Canada but for now, I am prepared to work to pay this expense.
I do love clothes and cosmetics but I look for deals, coupons, and shop the sales by season. I donate clothes that no longer suit me. It took me 2 months to find the best deal on Birkenstocks. My old ones have developed a crack that pinches the bottom of my foot so they must be replaced after 3 summers of wear. I found great deals this week online at Factory Shoes – only $75 for a sandal that sells everywhere for $119- $129.
My challenge to you ………… think of your personal priorities and then find a way to manifest what you need. If you can’t do it on your own, work with a friend (the happiest and most positive person in your life). There are times in our lives when this is more difficult – perhaps the message to remember – this too shall pass.