This article is an excerpt from our magazine.
February 8, Author: No longer content with the choices we made as teenagers, we are answering the call of who we were meant to be, before life and all of its obligations took control of the steering wheel and we crawled into the back seat, content to ride instead of steer.
Like bumper cars, we bounced off other people and their needs. Some of this was necessary. Those who married, had children, or ailing parents, needed to meet the needs of those relationships. But now, in the middle of our lives, enough experience beneath our belts to have a little spunk, we have started to listen to the directional map we were born with.
For me it was like a tribal drum beat that sounded in the distance, faint, but clearly calling me. And then, my own heart began to catch its rhythm and answer back. I had to know if I had any talent as a writer.
I had to write about the life I knew and would experience in the future. I answered the call. Off to France for a writing class and the instructor unlocked my imprisoned muse, setting her free to be the scribe she needed to be.
For my friend Frog, the calling was singing. With a completely different career path, she sang in choirs, dinner theaters, just for fun. But, while I was hearing my drummer, she was hearing her own. She is now singing with Opera companies, and beautifully I might add.
Another friend is starting her own consulting business. Two others are racing off to teach in a foreign country, while another has started her own jewely line; designs by Tookie!
This is no accident.
I believe we reach middle age, approach menopause, and find our minds are freed and our souls laid open. We suddenly realize we are half done with life, maybe it is even more than half over.
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Middle-aged couples cite several sources of marital satisfaction. The census data have numbers for the population by age, and I ran the numbers and estimated that the average age of non-Hispanic white Americans increased from in to in An.
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So middle age is a very real and distinctive phenomenon, one central to the success of our species - which places it in stark contrast to the mid-life crisis, which turns out not to exist at all.