On Turning 50


ďI do not ask to know,
I do not ask to see,
I ask only to be used.Ē
- Sufi Prayer

Today is my last day of my last year of the forties. Tomorrow is the first day of a new decade for me and so it seems only right that I start with the beginnerís mind. These last weeks of my 49th year have been a jumble of success and pain. I have been recognized outwardly as a success by large groups of successful people and earned lovely media coverage in the process. Oddly and ironically even, for all my longing and desire to be recognized by the world for my love work at Good Clean Love, this recent winning and all the external recognition that has come with it has fueled both my† insecurity and a fierce inner search for what success means to me.

I learn and re-learn this most fundamental of all truths: that the world is made from the inside out.

It is timely to learn this again as I celebrate my 50th birthday. I am keenly aware of time and energy now as the truest resources of life. I watch now as the long period of daily mothering winds down along with my seemingly endless spurts of energy.

Now I have to choose where my energy goes and some must replenish the stock that has been poured into the childhoods of my four kids. Now I have to reconcile with the truth that the options are not endless. That time is actually the resource that is most limited.

I want to honor the time I have with the work that is truly mine to do. I want to be of use. The insistent pain in my shoulder has brought me to the beginning again. Discipline that seemed effortless is now requiring a new level of commitment. The †skills that I was, not so long ago, cocky about, need to be reinvented again. If aging gracefully is anything it is the courage to know that lifeís truth is seen best through beginnerís eyes. Real wisdom is embodied in the joy of this day, of the connection right in front of you.

I have been a giver for years. At 50, I am learning the gifts of receiving. Letting go of how I think things should look, or what I expect them to be and listening as an action verb are the fundamentals. Holding the space for others to find their own truth instead of insisting on telling them is a profound shift that only years could have given me. This active listening is how I am learning to discern what is really mine to do. It is how I might be able to hear in the deep ear inside my chest, where I might be of use. This is the age where willingness is soft, spirit is large and love is all there is time for.

Love This? Never Miss Another Story.


Linda S.
Linda Stuckey4 years ago

Happy belated birthday :-)

june t.
june t.4 years ago


-- -.4 years ago


Deborah L.
Deborah L.4 years ago

If you thought the 1st 40 went by fast,hold on! The coming years are going to whiz by. Don't blink--next year is almost here!

Shalvah Landy
Past Member 4 years ago

A slightly late Happy Birthday. I just turned 50 on October 21. I have always looked at the numbers changing as objective figures. But when I think about it 50 is half a century, now that is remarkable. And the fact that since the year we were born 1961, the world population has more than doubled itself.

Dawn G.
Dawn Harvey4 years ago

Good for you, sounds like you are relishing your age.

Danuta Watola
Danuta Watola4 years ago

Thanks for the information.

Zee Kallah
Past Member 4 years ago

I'm 69 today and lovin' it.

My Care2 friends have sent me an overflowing inbox of precious ecards and comments. Thank you.

They put the Happy in my birthday.

I am grateful.

Part of growing old is surrendering.....job, sometimes health, it's like a progression of giving up all that is material.

Of course, if instead of giving it up, you give it away, well, you just might end up digging your way out of a mountain of treasure.

Parvez Zuberi
Parvez Zuberi4 years ago

You enjoy life if you are fifty or sixty if you are surrounded by caring loving people around you that is the blessing from GOD with good health

Leena K.
Leena K.4 years ago

Every day is worth looking around and going on age is only a number si keep going and enjoy life, thanks!