This month I turn 60. I know it’s crazy. I know there must be a mistake on the birth certificate or worldwide calendar or maybe I have just woken after a 20 year bout of amnesia. But if I really believe that then I am selling so very short what the years have brought me.
I certainly don’t feel old but I do feel lived in. I feel comfy in this skin that has carried three beautiful sons, swum countless kilometres in early morning swims, cried myself to sleep in times of sadness and felt the wind on my face in the most remote parts of the globe. I have experienced adventure in the Developing World and dealt with every-woman issues in my home, work, friendship and church contexts.
And now that I have reached 60, I am truly beginning to live in a new way. With freedom, passion and hopefully, a lot more wisdom than my twenty year old self. She did a good job, a great job at times, but she didn’t have the lessons of life that ask you to step back from your history, your personality and your circumstances. To make peace with your emotions and weigh up your reactions. To dig deep into your emotional tank and find empathy, restraint and compassion, to add to your courage.
Turning 60 is a privilege. It’s a nod to the world that growing older is one of life’s anomalies. That an ageing exterior is inconsistent with the person you cannot see, for she is more alive than ever before.