Baby boomers seem to fall into one of two categories. Either you have decided to live or you have decided to begin dying. Whoa, what do I mean by that? Astrologers call it the Chiron Return, which occurs around the age of 50. It is the point where we subconsciously decide to carry on living or give up and begin to die. Whether you believe in this or not, I think that any subconscious decision can be consciously changed at any time.
Maybe you are sure you fit in the living category but consider these questions. What do you talk about when you are with your friends? Do you talk about your health or lack of it? How about who died recently or has some terminal illness? Do you complain about how old you feel and how you can’t do things like you used to? Or do you talk about what you are going to do and where you are going next? See where I’m going with this?
Some baby boomers are out there having the time of their lives enjoying every minute of their freedom from a job. They have goals and make plans.
Other baby boomers become more and more isolated. They do less and less, making their world and life smaller. Eventually, they have no goals, ambitions or friends. When I look around, the two types are more and more obvious. I see it happening with people I am close to and it is scary. I don’t want to fall into this category, ever.
Recently, I was reading over someone’s bucket list that included a photo safari in Africa. I thought, that used to be on my list but I’m too old now. WHAT!?! Back up. Why would I think that? I may not have the funds to do it but I am not too old. I think the older we get, the more important it is to do what excites us NOW.
In 2014, I learned I had a rare cancer. The good news was that my surgeon felt it was very confined and that he got it all during the surgery. I had six months of chemotherapy to augment the surgery. For over a year and a half, I was very ill but I kept busy. I had lots of other stressors in my life at the same time. It wasn’t easy but I kept a positive attitude.
Once my chemo was done, I had a big decision to make. I could stay in Southern California and work my butt off to make a living there, or I could retire early and move to Northern California where my best friend lives and the cost of living is much lower. It seems like a no-brainer but it was a huge decision.
I had lived in Southern California for most of my adult life. I had a lifestyle I was pretty comfortable with and lots of friends I would be leaving. I had a four-bedroom house to pack up and move on my own. My elderly step-father lived with me but didn’t want to move and leave his doctors so I had to find a place for him. My retirement income was not enough to support me and I wasn’t sure how I would make extra money. In spite of all of this, I just knew it was the right decision for me.
So, now a little more than a year after moving, most of my strength is back, it is springtime and I am making plans! I live on a limited budget so I look for economical ways to have adventures. If you are teetering on the brink of isolation, I hope to inspire you to get up and get out. One of my favorite quotes is “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away!” ~Vicki Corona
You may not be able to go to far-away, exotic places but you can still have grand adventures.