Female, age 53 – (click on image to enlarge)

I’m both happy and bummed about the way I look now.  Overall, I am happy, but I feel that some of my most difficult trials have left their telltale signs. I’m mostly irritated (by anti-aging product advertising) because the models haven’t been alive long enough to have aging issues! Show me a truly mature woman whose product use works and I will gladly give it a try. “Results not typical” doesn’t count!!

It’s a very strange time for me. I just retired and my mom role is winding down, as my youngest is nearly 17.  On the other hand, my mother needs extra care since her stroke. I’m not sure who I am at the moment, but I’ll go with daughter of Jesus and everything else will continue to fall into place. But, back in the day, I hate to admit it was all about me and having fun. Any maturing was not in my plan. Thankfully, it happened in spite of myself. In the greater scheme of things, YES (I have accomplished what I hoped to by now).
(Due to) A lot of prayer and the blessings of PLAN B.

I was diagnosed with MS one and a half years ago. When I crashed on my motorcycle and hit my head, I went in for a scan. The nurse said “You have no hemorrhaging or concussion due to the accident, however, you may have M.S.”  It was a complete surprise. I had to retire because I was exhausted from the stress and commute, which was causing confusion and anxiety.  I feel better and we are adjusting to the financial challenges. I have found that if I am careful, I can do a couple of major physical activities per day (laundry & shopping or cooking & limited cleaning), but if I miscalculate, I am not able to function well for several hours the following day.   We make sure I am cool when it’s hot and warm when it’s cold.  Sometimes we have to leave earlier than planned or we are not able
to go where we planned – depending on how I feel.  We plan around the medication – either bringing it or being home, so I never miss an injection. We are learning that our patience bucket is not as full as we thought and that plan B is not always the best, but can be pretty good.

I’m nearly able to stop multi-tasking, which sounds odd, but after juggling so much at work for so long, it tended to spill into my personal life.  I can finally have a phone conversation without trying to do one or two other things at the same time.  I was also able to say “I can’t right now” and even said “No” recently due to doctor’s orders to cut down on stress. The love of Jesus, family & friends keeps me going every day. I never forget that Jesus is the author of my life.  I’m blessed that He chooses show His strength in my weakness – I’m all in!

(Regarding anything I would change) Not let the molestation have such a negative impact on my life for so long.

(I am most proud of) Being a children’s ministry leader.

(I view the aging process as) Superficially, negative-I want it to stop! But in truth, this is one of my favorite times of my life. A chance to
see what I can accomplish without the excuse of full time work getting in the way.

(Regarding my bucket list) Yes, I would love to complete several stained glass projects to display at church. A bit intimidating right now, but I’m finally at that age where those old road blocks don’t seem to matter so much anymore. WOOHOO!!

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