Most of the people in my life these days, in fact for the past years are younger than I am to varying degrees, besides my children and grandchildren.
This ranges from young teenagers to early adults in the blossoming of their lives. So often our meeting provides them a safe place to share special moments or fears and struggles in their lives. Sometimes offering a story of my own or an antidote, new perspective to work with or just an ear to listen.
Mostly though the age ranges are forties and fifties, years for me that were powerful, successful and challenging for many untold reasons. I look at each of them with a mixture of emotions; envy that I am not there any more, joy of the magic that can evolve through troubles laced with early mature wisdom, of what success did and does look like, how responsibility and freedom change and how the topic or view of age moves on.
Years ago, 65 was old, ancient, one foot in the grave! Now it can be the 45 of the past or in some cases 35!
That is on the outside. On the inside it is something different and just as hard to reconcile. Whether healthy or not we have to come to terms ourselves. Gratefully I am healthy and have been most of my life at least since 20 years old. Prior to 15 or so I did suffer several quite serious illness yet always seemed to raise above them.
This year I am 65 and can hardly believe it at least in how I feel, what my desires are and what I want to continue to do, be and see. On the outside the story is different and I am hard on myself for what I see or what I perceive is there or not every day. It also has come up with a few others I know of this age. No matter how much care you take, what you do, think and say, there are telltale signs that creep into view and one morning a huge sigh is let out in realization of the past gone by. Oh Well it is here!
Even those who think they know you, who know some of your stories, who see how you live and what you do these days cannot know all of what came before and there is “so much more that you were in the years they are in now!”
Taos, where I am at the moment has been quite magical it what has been manifested, revealed, shared, gifted, given and received. Yesterday I participated in a powerful Inipi, a Lakota sweat lodge ceremony. It had been a year or so since my last one in Ojai, CA. The lodge took me deep into gratitude for all that has been, is and will be.
And this photo shoot experience has been part of the gratitude. And 0ddly enough in the making for four years or so, commissioned by someone on the East Coast whom I have never met. It came about from them seeing my television program back in 2005. After many attempts over the past four years to do a shoot when I was on the East Coast, it never happened. Then a month or so ago the request was sent to find someone in Taos to do the shoot instead.
I found Heather at Sparrow Photography, Taos. The client had very special requests for clothing and style for the main shoot yet then allowed for more relaxed views toward the end. These are just 5 of 197 shots. Heather was wonderful to work with and she knew up front of my apprehensions and vulnerabilities of what would be revealed. I am grateful for her sensitivity and considerations.
No I don’t look like this every day though in another life episode I use to most of the time. I am so grateful for these points of remembering now laced with much more mature wisdom and hints of vulnerability and humility.
No I am not dead yet, still lots of life in these bones, laughter to give out and love to experience.