My heart is heavy as I wait to hear news about my dear friend who is fighting for her life. She is younger than I am and seemed to be in good health until a few months ago.
We never know how quickly our lives can take a bad turn. When we feel we are at the top of our game, we can receive a negative diagnosis from a doctor. Many of my friends are in their seventies and older. We work hard at taking good care of our bodies. We work hard at taking care of our minds. But no matter what we do, those of us in our “third act” as Jane Fonda refers to those in later life, know that time is limited for us on this earth.
I like the term Third Act, because so many good things happen in third acts. Someone has recently written a book with interviews from women who are in their eighties. The reviews say the wisdom and interesting stories in this book make this a good read. I will read it when the price comes down a bit.
It is hard not to just say, well, there is nothing I can do at my age, about the way the world is going. I sometimes think I could spend my last days sleeping late, watching streaming movies, having lunch with friends, and reading the stack of books that are on my TBR list. But I know I would grow weary of that schedule, bored with life itself.
Since my husband died, I have become even more determined to make my life matter. While he was with me I gave much of my time to him. He wanted my time and attention, and even needed it at times. I was always busy with writing and my writing events, but I tried not to let them interfere with us. After all, he had been with me for forty years; through those years when I was searching for my truth. I think I always wanted to make a difference in this world. That was why I taught school.
Now in my third act, I am teaching adults and working with my writing organization to help writers who live in the mountains where I live. I can’t change the world, but I can help one person at the time to follow their dream.
At present I plan to meet with writers in Swain county this month to help them organize there.
I will visit Transylvania county where we have a new representative for NCWN West, and recently, the editor of the Graham Star and I exchanged emails about meeting with writers in Graham county.
I can give opportunities to writers and poets who want to teach and share what they have learned with those who are beginning to write and need leadership. This year we will have three guest instructors at WritersCircle. Karen Holmes in July, Tara Lynne Groth in August, and RichardKrawiec in September.
I am sure my friend who is suffering tonight in a hospital has many plans for the future. I hope she has the chance to follow through on them. But if she doesn’t, she has made a difference in the lives of so many people, including me. She is loved and respected. Her legacy will be lasting and noteworthy.