Sooner or later (if we are fortunate enough to stay) each of us will face the loss of our youth. The outward shifts can feel painful, watching our bodies begin to change; bits droop and widen, skin dries and wrinkles, memory and sight weakens. Our egos have a field day.
Then there are the inner shifts, which can also feel deep and painful. The questioning of life and its meaning, the point of it all. Wondering if we could have done more…somehow been more. And the dawning realisation that well over half of our life has gone and what have we REALLY done with it?!
It is at this point in our lives, we tend to unravel (aka known as the midlife crisis). Something happens to us – whether it’s an illness diagnosis, the death of a loved one, a dead-end job, a depression arrives or someone we love leaves; but we can no longer carry on as we did before. This becomes the catalyst for change. The full transition from ego to Spirit-led living. It is at this point, if we dare to go inside and grieve, that something truly incredible can be born. A new life. Our own.
We finally start to live the life we were always meant to. Without the false masks or fears. We begin to shed our old skin (never easy). Yes, it was youthful but often full of insecurities and angst, a need to please and be approved of. What midlife eventually offers us is the gift of ease in a new skin, a caring less and daring more, a loving eyes approach to the world and everyone in it. It is a phase of our lives where we can set more boundaries, say no and yes more, drop our masks and let go of who and what does not serve us.
It is a time of assessing our choices and breaking free from the chains of consumerism and routine. A time for tears, tenderness, sadness and joy. A time of waking early, connection and solitude, risk-taking, learning new things and always about gratitude. Appreciating what we have and have lost, the beauty of life and the gifts of our life challenges.
If we allow ourselves this unravelling of mid-life, if we dare to grieve all that we have lost – our hopes and dreams, people, our youth… what is waiting for us on the other side is something much more meaningful than smooth skin and being viewed by others as beautiful or sexy. What is waiting for us on the other side is Freedom.
About the author, Donna Lancaster
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