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  • Writer's pictureJL Nash

What Happens After Middle Age? What Age Am I?


It happened. I completed my 54th year of existence as a human on this planet. I use this description in case one day I am converted into a human-cyborg to aid longevity. As long as I'm still mobile, with my sight and hearing, I'd be happy to see 100 but that's not an average age in this society. It's roughly 79-82 years old which makes me beyond middle age. I'm not elderly, I'm not even old but what am I? There must be some way of describing me apart from Gen X.

I am pleased to announce that I have in fact breached the line of invisibility and instead of putting on a menopausal middle, I'm slowly losing mine. My hair is getting longer and although there are a handful of grey hairs, it's still a luscious, thick, curly, auburn mane. I am seeing fine lines around my forehead, eyes and mouth, not bad considering I was a smoker for the best part of 15 years. I am older, but not old. Am I deceiving myself?

I decided to change careers last year and spent time retraining and preparing for it. I am here now, copywriting and editing. I still see Psychotherapy clients at weekends but the week is devoted to the new me. Such reinvention has boosted my energy levels and ability to concentrate. There is a different feeling when I am focused on what I love and enjoy. It's the feeling of purpose.

What else with this reinvention? Well, I am more than 35kg lighter than I was last January. I am learning new skills, including a couple of musical instruments and watercolour painting and have volunteered at the local Amateur Dramatics Theatre to do a couple of non-acting things. There are activities I'm not replacing like jamming with my mates but I feel like a new person. I have new sized clothing (from size 22 to 12) and even do my makeup differently.

I remember it took me about three years to reinvent myself about 16 years ago when I stopped teaching, lecturing and managing. It worked. I don't expect to be the finished product yet and I hate the phrase 'work in progress' so let me simply say, I'm keeping the best bits and shedding a skin. There is a new, different patterned one within. I have still more to change, of that I'm sure. I feel that I am rising to live another life once again.

Anyone else been there? Looking at Madonna and David Bowie, I may not have their budget but I really don't think I am deluding myself. (I am lucky to have an incredibly flexible intelligent husband). These changes are good, and I'm enjoying the creative productivity that comes with it.

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