Back in 2010 when I moved back to Pennsylvania, post divorce, I spent a lot of time with family. My brother Bob, who was semi-retired at that time and I would occasionally go for walks, and he’d start reflecting back on his life. He’d ask me things like what I wanted to be remembered for.
I kept thinking, What the hell! I’m only 55, do I have to reflect already? I’m just getting started on my new life. I want to make plans, not reflect! I thought he was getting really morbid and it worried me. But he was sort of semi-retired after a very fulfilling career as a successful president of a company and he was in his reflecting phase.
Fast forward to today – guess who’s reflecting now? I think finally turning the age when a person can successfully apply for Social Security is what’s made me princess of the dark side. Plus, working in a place filled with nubile 20-somethings sometimes inspires you, and sometimes makes you want to drag your withering corpse to the crypt already.
I’ve been torn recently, between making plans for the success I still feel like I haven’t achieved, and saying terrible things to myself about what the point is now anyway. After all, the painful truth is I’m closer to death than birth, unless I live to be 125.
But, you know me. I sometimes slip into a funk, but I always spring back because I know a powerful truth. When you stop making plans and following dreams, you die. I watched that happen to my ex mother-in-law and I know it’s true.
Life is just a series of goals you set for yourself. Some goals you reach, some take you down paths you never even imagined, and some never materialize. But pursuing them is what gives you a reason to get up every morning. And achieving them makes you feel amazing. And there are a ton of people who found amazing success when they were older. You can never give up the dream of being one of them.
So, maybe it’s crazy to want to finish this screenplay, or keep pursuing the other goals I’ve set, but the alternative is so much crazier. How could a totally healthy woman, with tons of energy, in one of the best countries in the world, with limitless possibilities at my fingertips, not set goals? That would be much crazier.