Another year, another chance to ask yourself: "Where do I want to be?"
What I Know for Sure
Wow, I can hardly believe it's here! I made it. Fifty. Me. My first and foremost reaction is hallelujah!!! I'm so grateful. I think of all the notable and noteworthy people who didn't see 50. Those we knew as icons, like the John Kennedys, father and son. Princess Di. Dr. King. And the many and mighty whose names will never make the history books but are beloved by those who knew them. I think of the 9/11 angels who were our earth peers for too short a time. And my heart overflows with gratitude for my great big life at 50.
What I know for sure as I crest this major milestone: My life is bigger than I can ever know or imagine. It has its own force field. I can feel myself propelling it—guiding it, even. But most often I try to surrender to its own divine guidance.
What I've learned in this first 50 is that if you can allow yourself to breathe into the depth, wonder, beauty, craziness, and strife—everything that represents the fullness of your life—you can live fearlessly. Because you come to realize that if you just keep breathing, you cannot be conquered. Divorce, trauma, disease, disappointment…I remember a time when I was so devastated by a friend's betrayal that I didn't even want to get out of bed. But I breathed my way through it and came out on the other side, stronger.
All these years I've been taking lessons from life experiences and feeling like I was growing into myself. Finally, I feel grown. More like myself than I've ever been. If it's true what Maya Angelou says, that the 50s represent everything you were meant to be, all I can say is, watch out.
I've been meaning to be more focused. To pay attention to everything. To take absolutely nothing for granted. Dance more often. Celebrate something every day. Give back to the world what it has given to me. My heart is open to the future. Bring it on!
From the January 2004 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine
We Hear You!