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On turning 60

In less than a week I’ll turn 60. That used to seem really old. Now, not so much. In a culture that values youth, you might think I’d want to go back and have a redo, but in fact, I wouldn’t turn the clock back even if I could.

I’ve had some grand opportunities. I’ve met some amazing people. And I’ve learned a lot about myself along the way. Granted I still have a lot to learn, but I feel good about where I am today. My 12 Step sponsor would be happy to hear me being so gentle with myself.

I feel a lot less pressure to be perfect. I don’t have to be the most put-together, youngest or coolest person in the room. Call it confidence or ambivalence; it’s freeing to not care so much about what others think. Don’t get me wrong. I do care, but not to the extent that I did even five years ago.

The nature of my daily work probably has something to do with that too. When my husband and I started our small business, we changed/adapted our careers. I’m an entrepreneur, a host and a farmer. I’m doing something I’ve never done before.

I like to think this experience, especially doing new tasks and meeting new people, will keep my mind young. I know the physical work of running our farm and glamping business is helping me to stay active at a time in my life when I would have probably been more inclined to take it easy. I’m constantly being stretched mentally and physically because of the path I’ve taken.

I’ve had several people who have modeled this lifestyle for me, but none so inspiring as my mom. She’s never been afraid of learning or trying something new. She earned her associate’s degree a few months after turning 60 and got her interior designer’s license not long before that.

Would I change some of the past six decades? Probably. But most days I realize that even the mistakes and missteps have helped make me into the person I am today.

As I consider my future - however long I have - I look forward to seeing what we do on our farm. I’m excited about my writing projects. And I’m open to trying some new things. And you know what else I’m excited about? Hanging out with our granddaughters, Mia and Sofie. While none of us are guaranteed another day or even another hour, my hope is that I’ll have many years of hanging out with these girls, reading books, playing dress up and having sleepovers on our farm.

This piece first appeared in Sherry’s column, Finding Myself in a Small Town, in the June 4, 2022 edition of the Corsicana Daily Sun.

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