48 Insights on Being 48

1.  I still want some things that I wanted when I was 18, like a vintage Airstream camper, tricked out on the inside.

2.  Parenting by giving freedom, autonomy, and guided direction is preferable to anything I did prior to this 40s philosophy.

3.  The body does not recover after a night of alcohol and punk rock music like it did before I was 48.

4.  Life never really becomes less rollercoastery for me but having a good support system in place makes the ride more tolerable.

5.  Finally learning to always trust my instinct, even if it goes against what I think I know.  Hard but valuable lesson.

6.  Everyone is a teacher or a guru. Every moment is an opportunity to learn something.

7.  I don't need a lot of friends - just a few who really get what friendship means.

8.  Fluidity does not mean compromising who I am; it simply means being able to move about freely and without rigidity.

9.   The Grateful Dead are still a favorite of mine.

10.  It is key to connect with those I love every day or nearly every day.  And by connect, I mean micro-moments of resonating, understanding, conveying love.

11.  Positivity and light are contagious.

12.  I have moved from healthy eating...to healthy and harm-free eating...to healthy and harm-free eating and living...this progression has been transformative. Getting rid of my sectional leather couch, purchasing only human-made shoes...these small steps have been mindful ways in which I am now walking this Earth, and it has impacted my soul.

13.  I patiently wait for Mother Nature to free me from our monthly appointments. Surely it will be soon.

14.  I am really enjoying physical closeness (not talking sex but I do enjoy that as well!) in a way I haven't experienced in half a lifetime. It feels safe. Reassuring. Comfortable.

15.  Vibration has the power to clear and cleanse.

16.  It is okay to say no.

17.  It is okay to say yes.

18.  Social anxiety doesn't ever really go away.

19.  Some things are worth fighting for with a full heart and all the passion one can conjure up.

20.  Puppies chew a lot of shit.

21.  Misogyny still sucks.

22.  Lashon hara isn't worth participating in, listening to, encouraging, or engaging in.

23.  Community is what and where you make it.

24.  Full compassion is the highest form of being. This is something I have learned recently. I have always been a compassionate person, but when I started actively practicing compassion for people who have wronged me and people who I don't particularly care for, my soul became a brighter.

25.  I am not a freak, I am just open.  (Yes, S.  I remember that quote, and believe in it.)

26.  Homeschooling is the best thing around.

27.  There are only so many YouTube Hacks  one can watch with the 4th grader before wishing the computer would explode.

28.  Love is not a feeling. It is a commitment to care about another person even when they are operating below standards, in conflict with you, are irritating, or countless other scenarios. I am speaking of all types of love like romantic, friendship, humanity, and parental love.

29. The body responds to respect.

30.  Sometimes support is found in the most unexpected places.

31.  Torah is everywhere.  Seriously.  Everywhere.

32.  A morning or daily practice is grounding, and helps weather life's bumpy road.

33.  I miss open-hearted yoga.

34.  Breath work and imagery can get me through anything positive or negative or neutral.

35.  Renewal and healing come from within.

36.  Jealousy will destroy friendships, relationships, and happiness. When I feel jealous, I have learned to breathe it out, and move forward with good feelings toward the other's good fortune.

37.  Never underestimate the power of a glass of red after a long day.

38.  Kindness travels far.

39.  It is hard when the body is sagging, things are drooping, veins are appearing, wrinkles are making appearances, and you are surrounded by young tight bodies or friends 8 to 10 years younger.  I am learning to lean into these alterations, and be proud of the inner me whose learned and lived wisdom is manifesting itself on the outside through these exact changes.

40.  Mindfulness in domestic duties is still something I have been unable to tap into.

41.  I find that I have less patience for time wasters, big talkers, and cranky workers. However, I have also learned that a smile can change the mood, I have the option of walking away, and that I can transform my impatience to forbearance and peace.

42.  The struggle for peace, love, Torah, and beauty never ends, as it shouldn't. The struggle cultivates renewal in some cases, and revolution in others. Regardless, this is the stuff of living.

43.  I have learned to sit with that which makes me uncomfortable, and to really search how to overcome those inherent and learned ideas about how life is supposed to be.

44.  All the people I previously felt had perfect lives are just as screwed up and flawed as the rest of us. They have something though - resilience, a love for others, and the ability to take each moment in its time. Instead of admiring their perceived "perfect life," I now admire the ways in which they navigate their bumpy roads and make the most of life in a positive way.

45. It is okay to grieve the end of something. To rely on friends to make sure you get out of bed. To acknowledge the ways in which this separation changed you forever. Whether death, divorce, or other ways present themselves in your life, sitting through the terribleness and the unending black hole has to happen. And it is okay to respond to that for as long as one needs.

46.  Even though I have learned many things in this 48th year of my life, I am a flawed human, and I struggle to improve certain areas of my life. I hope my awareness of my flaws and my desire to change count for something.

47.  There is something to be said for moving slowly in a relationship. Lingering over words. Building excitement. Cultivating comfort, openness, trust. Waiting when you don't want to wait. Expressing when you don't want to express. Being.

48.  I am me. I have my own way of thinking, my own style (or lack thereof), my own lens with which I see the world...and because of that I am uniquely who I am supposed to be in this moment.