Lost….a step toward finding myself yet again?

I have felt lost in the world as of late. I have not been writing as much, have not felt focused, have wondered about my purpose, life in general, everything. I don’t have an answer to what causes this, really. I can make some guesses….the state that the world has been in, the aftermath of retiring and trying to redefine myself, the ageism I feel (most frighteningly within myself at times – the questioning the worth of anything that I might have to offer and even questioning my own worth in this world at times.) It’s a difficult part of the road to have to navigate.

My belief has always been that in order to grow through to the next step, we have to face whatever is going on right now directly and walk through it. Easier said than done. How does one walk through what feels like quicksand with no sense of direction? I have always been directionally challenged, but this particular form of it comes with no GPS, unfortunately.

I have loved writing, but have difficulty sitting down to do that – wondering what the purpose is or if anyone will even want to read anything that I write? I enjoy painting, but then wonder if my paintings will just end up in the garbage when I am dead and gone. And even though I enjoy taking singing lessons just for fun, I find myself wondering why I am doing that or if I am being silly and foolish. Oh, these negative voices within are a formidable enemy.

So, how to befriend those voices and work with them….To hear the fear, sadness, loneliness, depression, feelings of invisibility and aloneness (even though I am one who craves and thrives on solitude – the pandemic has pushed those edges…even for me). To have the courage to hear and speak with those voices and feelings so that I can address the feelings underneath and yet keep moving forward.

I thought that the book that I wanted to write was about the experience of women aging. But, as I ponder this more after talking with a book coach (I signed up for a few sessions with a book coach to see what help I could get) and hearing the feedback that she felt that the book was about much more than that – that it will include that piece for sure- but that there is more to it…..so, as I think about this, I begin to have some thoughts….

Thoughts like …..the book may be about what I am experiencing and feeling more at this stage of my life. How do we, when we no longer have the distractions of work and goals of accumulating….how do we live as we now more directly face and look into the face of our own mortality and eventual (now closer as we age) death? How do we live knowing that we will die? I have no children (by choice), so I don’t really have anyone to remember me…..but even with children, I don’t really remember my great grandparents….so generations later what will be remembered by anyone? Does that matter? Or does it matter more how I live my life now ? Is it to simply experience what is happening right now, do what good that I can (because that is a value of mine) with what I have, and enjoy what I can (because I do believe that life should be enjoyed)…? To write and paint and sing because it feels good to do those things? To go for walks outdoors. To take drives to be out in nature? To keep living consciously and intentionally. To cherish each meaningful contact with someone? To cherish even the pain of the consciousness of eventual death …to allow that to help me appreciate each moment of life even more?

Maybe….being lost can be a good thing?

14 thoughts on “Lost….a step toward finding myself yet again?

  1. As always happens when I read your words, I drop in and take a deep breath. I have had similar existential questions, and it’s wonderful to read your nuanced journey through this important territory and take in the wisdom you arrive at!

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  2. I believe you answered your questions 🙂 Yes to everything that you enjoy doing because your joy in what you do is the most important reason to do it. Retirement is kind like death (bear with me). At least in my case. The day after my last day at work, my work email account and computer login was deactivated. I was totally cut out of the system, like I had died. I have enough contact with my former coworkers to know that they are doing fine without me. So I don’t worry about legacies or what people think or say about me after I’m truly dead. I do a lot of things because they give me joy now. By the way, I think it’s wonderful that you take voice lessons. I imagine that singing must give you a lot of pleasure…I imagine because I can’t sing at all 😬 😁

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    1. Thanks for your comment. I agree about finding joy where and when we can and doing things that bring that for us. As for singing…..I enjoy it. Whether I can sing or not… That’s a separate question!

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      1. 😄I bet you can. I used to sing a lot. I was in my high school chorus and I loved singing along to my records and the radio when I was alone. But one time, at a small party and after too much beer, I started to sing along to a record. The look on my friends’ faces quickly shut me up 😬 So now I won’t even sing Happy Birthday in public. I just mouth the words 🙂

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  3. I can absolutely understand where you are, as I am going through this journey, too. Regardless of age or place, it is important to enjoy the travel, and not look at it so much as a destination to a particular location, but a learning experience all along the way, and to savor every second of it.

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