Being a Boomer Woman, I held firmly to the beliefs that I would never grow old, never get sick and never die. As I witness the consequences of aging in others and myself, I realize I might be wrong. Through my own personal exploration of the Aging Boomer Journey, I have received great gifts. Gifts such as learning to wait, sensing when to stay quiet, really listening, and letting go of old patterns that take up too much energy. I now know how to look for ways to feel better and am more often in state of appreciation. Basically, I am learning to be more in touch with feelings than my thoughts.
While the outside signs of aging have a life of their own, the inside changes seem to grow shiny and new with self-examination and acceptance. My Beyond Boomer friends tell me once 70 plus hits; I will accept it all with a grimacing smile and a feeling of relief. Yet, sitting here in my mid 60s I find aging is bringing a mixed bag of surprises, some powerfully wonderful and others not so great.
My 67th birthday celebration in mystical Tepoztlan, Mexico brought me time and space to further explore the gifts of my aging. The powerful experience of walking a labyrinth proved to be a metaphor of how I have lived and how I would prefer to live in the future. The labyrinth instructions were simple; keep my eyes closed, stay focused on feeling with my feet, sense the auto-correcting sharp rocks and trust the process. And yet, my complicated mind wanted to know. “How long is it going to take? How would I know when I finish? What happens if I lose my way?”
So the battle began between my questioning mind and my feeling heart as I started my halting walk to the labyrinth center. The one hour journey sometimes brought sudden feelings of uncertainty and fear. Cracking my eyes open to be sure of the path, I would swiftly return to believing in my feet. Just as quick, my feet would alert me of danger if I kept my attention focused on feeling (thankfully warning me I was about to fall down a long flight of stairs) Walking the labyrinth showed me clearly that trusting what I was feeling could be as powerful as depending on my judging intellectual mind.
Perhaps paying attention to feelings of your heart rather than thoughts in your head is the path towards Aging with Wisdom!