When I first started my year-long quest on my 64th birthday I thought I went into it with no expectations. I certainly didn’t expect to discover I needed shoulder replacement surgery. And yet, as I prepared for it, I found out that I held emotional baggage in my shoulder.

I first thought that releasing the emotions would magically release my shoulder. What I’ve come to realize is that by releasing old emotions that were stuck in my shoulder, I’m giving my new shoulder joint a better chance of working properly.

As I approach my 65th birthday, sometimes I’m perplexed about being that age.

It took me some time to get used to having a 6 at the beginning of my age. Leading up to the year-long quest I began a journey to get healthier, not because I was dreading the 6-5 birthday, but because it was time for me to take care of my health in a big way.

I began working with a functional medicine doctor. There were some major issues going on. Nothing that was critical at the time, but things that could become critical if I didn’t change. One of the things that showed up was adrenal fatigue, and I know now that the adrenal fatigue began in the early days of my grief journey. I tended to a lot of things on my grief journey, but not my health, not in the way I needed to, and my body was feeling the effects. Grief manifests physically, how can it not?

It took me a year of diligent work, and investigation to begin to finally heal from the physical effects of grief.

I’m still working on it, but we’ve found the right formula for my body.

One of the biggest struggles has been consistent sleep, a common symptom of adrenal fatigue. It has taken scrupulous attention to my evening routine, eliminating foods that do not support my body, taking supplements that do, along with meditation, movement, and more. As my sleep improved, my energy returned, and my adrenals began to get stronger. I know that this is a way of life for me, because it is life giving for me. In all of this I’m finding my natural rhythm, and it’s not what I thought it would be, or what I wanted it to be. Again, it is what is right for me, and I’m embracing what is right for me, however it shows up these days.

I keep receiving reminders about my upcoming birthday, mostly from folks wanting to help me make the best decision about Medicare packages. When I think about turning 65, sometimes it feels surreal; sometimes I wonder how it arrived so soon. What I don’t feel is old. I still feel like the same me I always did; in fact, in a lot of ways, I feel more like me than ever. I still have a way to go on my year-long quest, and I know that I will shed more things that no longer serve me as well as receive insights along the way. So how do I really feel about turning 65? I don’t really like it, I want things to be different, and they aren’t.

Can I complain about it, and rail about fleeting youth?

Sure I can, and I’ll still celebrate my 65th birthday in a few months. That’s why being with what is, is sooooo much better than trying to go back to the way things were. From this place I can be the best me I am now, and truth be told, I have more energy now, and feel better that I did 5, 10, or more years ago. I choose to live my life fully now because lamenting about what would have or could have been keeps me from my full potential. I don’t want to wake up at 75 or 85 and feel like I didn’t live my life all along the way.