There is all of this hype around folks that have midlife crises…during our forties and fifties…questioning life, aging, whining over our lost youthfulness. And yet…for me…I believe that I may have reached midlife contentment. Gratitude for life as I know it…very little angst for what lies ahead…and not too much regret for all that has passed. It is a good place to be.
My BFF Jen Hatmaker (you do know that if you read her stuff, you naturally feel like BFFs) says it so wisely in her book For the Love. [If you have not picked it up yet, stop what you are doing, click on this LINK and order it now. Well…at least those of you that may be a midlifer or a mom or a Jesus loving justice seeker.]
You settle in. These kids, this husband, this little life you’re building…you say amen. You are slower to tell everyone how wrong they are and quicker to gather your folks and breathe gratitude. This is your place. These are your people. This is your beautiful, precious life. Probably about halfway done on earth, you lay down angst and pick up contentment.
Annie Dillard was right: “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” You decide your days should contain laughter and grace, strength and security. You realize insecurity, striving, jealousy, and living in comparison will eventually define your entire life, and that is not the legacy you want. Let the young whippersnappers duke it out; you and your people are busy enjoying a bottle of wine on the deck.
For the Love chapter 2: On Turning Forty
Dang. Ain’t that the truth? How we spend our days, is how we spend our lives? My days are currently filled with long hours at work that I love, date nights, lazy Saturdays, planning for school in Haiti, inviting family and friends over or out for dinner, reading blogs and books and facebook posts, flipping through instagram and pinterest, church potlucks, Friday night football games, eating bowls of popcorn while watching law and order reruns, bible studies and book clubs, phone calls to my folks, text messages and long conversations with my girlie… and so. much. more.
A big highlight from last weekend, was a 5 hour, 7 city search with the hubby for a new living room chair. A yellow chair. From furniture shop to furniture shop we traveled…there was a drive-through at McDonalds for ice cream cones…a gas station refuel, where we purchased sunflower seeds and sodas for the drive…it was an ALL DAY EVENT…for a silly yellow chair. And you know what? It was awesome. Serious marital bonding over this chair. No stress – no rush – just a Saturday adventure for a couple of contented midlifers.