The changes that often come in your 50s offer opportunities and benefits that bring joy and peace.
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When women with children reach the age of 50 or so, they often experience a big change in the vocation they carried out so intensely and passionately for many years — motherhood.
Whether you have many or few children, turning 50 often means you’ve earned diplomas in pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, teaching the basics of language, and helping kids get through school. And, in some cases, reaching this age also means beginning to learn to live with “empty nest syndrome.”
It’s a time when you may think, “What now?” The change in parenting comes at a time when you need more time for yourself, to take care of yourself physically. It’s a good time to dedicate more time to moderate exercise if you haven’t been doing it already and to consider other measures of self-care, like eating healthier and getting adequate rest.
We’ve already outgrown a lot of things
You’re at a time in life when you’re able to look at yourself with compassion as you also remember past mistakes. If you haven’t forgiven yourself, it’s time to do so. It’s a time to get to know yourself better and cherish the wisdom of experience. A woman in her 50s is more sure of herself. She knows where, how, when, and with whom she wants to be.
For all these reasons, this is a good time to:
- Start a business—the one you were hiding in the bottom drawer of your heart; perhaps you have a hobby that can become your small or big business.
- Incorporate into your life, in a routine way, activities you didn’t have time for before: walking, reading, volunteering … Just because you’re no longer needed in the same way at home doesn’t mean that you’re not needed by someone else. Have you seen how many nonprofits, parishes, etc., are looking for people like you?
- Start enjoying your favorite people again—your spouse first of all—spending more time with them after perhaps several years of little free time due to many responsibilities, enjoying uninterrupted conversations and comforting silences.
- Dedicate more time to God, who is Love with capital letters, without rushing and sometimes without specific goals. It’s the perfect age to have times of prayer in which you don’t ask Him for this or for that. You no longer go to Him only to tell Him about an annoyance. You’re becoming more Mary than Martha: you’re able to stop the hustle and bustle and sit down to listen to Him, just enjoying being in front of the tabernacle.
This is the moment when we can begin to savor life more, enjoying what’s really important. Sure, we might miss some of the joys of having younger children at home and the vigor of youth, but to everything there is a season, and we need to recognize and appreciate this stage of life with gratitude.