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Are we ever in control of our own destiny? I am in my fifties and at one time I thought that I had my life all planned out. No husband, no children, I was going to do as much traveling as possible and I was going to work as hard as I could so that I could retire by the time I was thirty. A wise woman once told me that, "PLANS CHANGE" and boy, did they ever. Thinking back, when did it all really change for me? I would have to say that every ten-year milestone had some impact on my life choices. It is how I decided to handle those choices that make me the person that I turned out to be.
I don't remember my twenties too much. I became one of those "FREEDOM" kids. After high school, my rules for life flew out the window. I was at that age where I felt that I earned that right to be my own person. I was no longer under my parents wings. I had my own place, my own job and I was paving my own way through life. I partied to all hours in the morning and I drank until I passed out. I made my own rules. I was an adult but as I look back, I now know that these were my learning years. I may have been self-preserved and independent but I lacked those much needed skills that I needed to survive in the everyday world such as cooking, cleaning and laundry. I was that kid that would show up at my mom's house to visit with a basket full of dirty laundry and my delicacies were fast food. I may have been independent and free but I was also lazy and selfish. This was the decade that I spent learning how to "GROW UP."
It wasn't until my thirties that I had my first life-changing moment. I lost my mom unexpectedly and it affected me more than I care to admit. I was in a relationship at this time, had a good career going and almost lost it all because of my desire not to move on. I hear that there are seven stages of grief but I think mine skipped a few steps because I stayed at anger. I didn't feel the need to have to talk about everything all the time and because of it, my relationship almost ended before it even had a chance to begin. I didn't care about going to work because, let's face it, who feels the need to be nice to people when everyone else was going on with their own lives and being happy because of it. I hated my dad because he made me the ultimate decision maker in every aspect of my mom's funeral. I was having to pick out flowers, the casket, what to dress her in, the church, when, where and what time? I was so "ANGRY." I knew that my dad was grieving as well, I just didn't know how much. He basically was needing someone to lean on and at that moment, it was his kids. He needed us to be his rock instead of it being it the other way around. His world was about to change and I was once again being selfish and not understanding the reality of how he was feeling after losing his wife of 33 years. My mind was telling me that no one would ever understand the impact of my loss because I "NEVER" had that chance to day "GOODBYE." It took a few years but I soon realized that the world does go on, you will survive and even though they are gone, they have never, really left. They will forever stay in your heart.
What can I say about my forties? This was the decade that I got my first big scare and my most challenging life-changing moment. My life was finally in order. My relationship was on track. I was debt free and my career is staying strong. I was living the dream. The only downside was that I was a heavy smoker, ate whatever, whenever I wanted and I "LOVED" my beer. I was finally happy with how my life was going despite my downfalls. It is amazing how one simple doctors visit can change your whole perspective on things. I went in for one of my many normal yearly doctors appointment when I was given the news that I had a Fibroid in my uterus. I was given two choices. I could either live with it and hope that it would go away when I hit menopause or have a partial hysterectomy. All I heard was blah, blah, blah, biopsy, and cancer. My world went dark, however, it wasn't a hard decision for me to make. I was no where near menopause so I didn't feel the need to confirm with my partner, as far as I was concerned, it was my body, my choice so hysterectomy it was. They say be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it? I wished for no kids and here I was making that choice. How did this change me? First, I must say that no one wants to hear that "C" word, "CANCER" so I faced that fork in the road and change my course. All I knew was that if I kept going down that road of disaster, I would die unhealthy and unhappy so I once again changed my fate in life. I quit smoking. I started managing my food choices, I joined a gym where I remained true to even still today and I even lost 40 pounds. This is the milestone where I became a die hard health and fitness guru.
I am now entering my fifties. I've heard that they are the new thirties but are they really? I don't know. A couple of years ago, I was diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis. Oh yes, that "DOUBLE WHAMMY," I had it but how did I get it? The only thing that I did know about this unknown demon was from what I had seen on a TV commercial. I was healthy or so I thought, I was taking care of myself or so I thought and I was staying true to my workouts and my eating habits so why? I had an incurable autoimmune disorder. This was now my life and I had to figure out how I was going to get myself through this. I was literally in the fight of my life. I have once again hit that fork in the road and I had to choose wisely. Life may have handed me a barrel of lemons but I refused to make lemonade. I wanted to do this naturally and without invasive treatments, prescriptions or doctors orders. I was looking for a place to start. It wasn't until I was doing research that I came across a clinic who dealt in alternative healing. Finally, a ray of hope. I have found that road that I was looking for.
I started seeing a nutritionist and I started educated myself. I learned about nightshades and toxic foods. I was so restricted on food choices that it would have been more easier to tell me what I could eat as opposed to what I couldn't. I had to read labels and I must say, "EVERYTHING" had something in in that I couldn't have. Change in diet is all about lifestyle changes, however, it should be a choice not something that you are forced into. This was my life and I had to face that fact. Food is my life sentence. Eat it and die or avoid it or live. What are my options? Not much but luckily we live in a world where you have that choice to choose. We are surrounded by a variety of health conditions and luckily the food industry is noticing it. I have educated myself to the point that if I want a good pizza or a nice, crunchy taco then all I have to do is make it myself with the ingredients that I can have. I may be fighting for "MY RIGHT TO BECOME FABULOUS AT FIFTY" but this demon that is trying to take control of my body is not a part of my life plan. I am unstoppable and this is a fight that I plan on winning. I want my fifties to be my new thirties.