This is for women of a certain age.
Easing my way out of a parking space at the health club earlier this week, I looked out of the window to make sure there were no cars barreling down the aisle. But instead of seeing another car, to my surprise there was a woman walking toward the car. Of course I immediately slammed on the brakes and motioned to her to keep coming.
As she passed she said, I would never drive one of those. They are hard to get in and out of”, commenting on the large SUV parked two spaces down that was blocking my line of sight as I was trying to back out.
She didn’t like mid size SUV’s either. “I have to be able to get in and out of a car without opening my legs.”
“Lady, I don’t know what that’s about,” I said to myself, but I gotta go. I have to be on a train in less than 45 minutes. However, the look on my face probably said something entirely different than what I was thinking.
“I still have my mother in my head after all these years” she said., “and 12 years of catholic school too”.
“Ooh baby! I said out loud. If I had time, I would give you my card. You need a coach.”
“ I have one” she said. He’s great. I just love coaching. I never knew what life coaches did, but coaching is just terrific.”
By now I am out of my parking space and trying to exit the parking lot, but my new found friend is still chatting. I am now down to less than 40 minutes to get home, showered and dressed and on the train.
She continues, “…and I’ve been married for 43 years to the same man, and I’m tired of him too.“
She also has three adult children all in their thirties, who now, it seems have developed a keen dislike and disapproval of their mother’s reinvention.
“They want to control everything I do, know every place I go. They don’t like anything that I do. They don’t like my body, my hair color, my clothes or that I stay active.”
She’d lost 80 pounds, and her hair color was quite becoming, I thought. Can’t imagine what they didn’t like about it. She felt they wanted her to be the fat old grandmother that sat around and did mostly nothing, or more like baby sit and bake cookies. She didn’t strike me as the type.
I couldn’t resist. I put my foot on the brake and looked my new friend in the eyes.
“If they don’t like how you are living your life, tell them too bad. You have raised them and taken care of everybody and now it’s your turn to do what you want to do.”
“Your new mantra is “it’s my turn”. Say it with me, I said and we repeated it together.
“ You tell them, ‘it’s my turn damn it, and you don’t have to like it.”
As she threw her head back laughing she said, “I like you. I meet the most interesting people at this health club.”
“Have a good workout”, I waived.
Sometimes you have to speak your truth out loud so others will hear it and know, but more importantly so that you remember.
BTW, I missed my train.
Empowering question of the week: Are you allowing someone else to dictate how you show up in your life?
Life is about choices. What will you choose for you today?