February 21, 2021

My 7th Decade Begins

Photo by Caroline Fernandes
Last week I turned 60. I celebrated by inviting my two families to roast (or toast) me and dance to rock & roll.

All on zoom of course.

Going into it, I imagined it to be the worst birthday I'd ever have but it turned out to be my favorite, even though processing some of the roasts has taken time to do, as I anticipated it might.

My take-away is that going forward, I need to take better care in not embarrassing those around me by being and expressing myself, without a filter.

I am a free spirit who has always lived in a bit of a bubble, so my work to be more conscious of my effect on others, is now laid out before me.

Gratefully.

There is a back story to this of course. 

When I was in college at BU (Boston U), the school gave out metal buttons that some of us put on our jean jackets. The buttons said "Be You".

I was more than knee deep in an eating disorder at the time and surrounded by many new personalities & cultures that confused me, about who I was. But more importantly, I no longer liked being on the swim team, and the pressure, and confinement of being on an athletic scholarship. 

I started therapy for my eating disorder, quit swimming and the "Be You" button, became my internal motto. I told no one. But I knew deep down that if I was going to find my way to health and happiness, I needed to start being myself, as well as discover more parts of me, that I hadn't yet met.

I needed to find my compass.

And there began my focus on being myself and not worrying, or caring, about what everyone else thought. 

A life process this is.

I also had the added pressure of growing up with 4 much older siblings, which was kind of like growing up with 6 mothers and fathers, instead of just two. This was both a fortunate thing but also sometimes hard.

So here I sit, as a 60-year-old, still making my way, but feeling more like myself than I ever have, thank goodness. 

Time is clearly running out.

At age 46, my daughter took the photo of me above in Costa Rica. At the time I didn't like it of me at all. It was much too raw, naked and serious.

Now as my skin continues to droop all over my body, I have new appreciation for the photo and for what it captured!

This sounds familiar I'm sure.

Happy belated Valentine's Day to you all, my dear readers,

 💘 Louise