As a middle aged woman I like things calm and quite, boring even. I am a planner. This hike is a huge leap from the safe, predictable life that I usually work towards. It was not on a whim that four years ago I told my boss that I would be leaving in 2016 to hike the AT. I have dreamed of thru hiking since I was a young girl, but life got in the way.
As I age my experiences continue to shape and change me. Over the past several years I have watched my husband’s parents lose themselves and any dreams they may have had in their younger years. They ‘played it safe’ and ‘followed the rules’ and now they have missed their chance. Alzheimers and dementia have taken who they once were away.
I set my start date for my 50th birthday- when I decided I wanted something different for my life however long or short it might be.
None of us know when or how our lives on this earth will end, or when the slow decline of age will eventually make it impossible to follow our hearts or work towards our goals. All we can do is live in the present while still dreaming of the future.
I am still a cautious person, planning and preparing, but will not go into my twilight years quietly or with regrets. I want my children and grandchildren to see, in me, what is possible when you are open to every opportunity that this wonderful gift of life has to offer each and every one of us.
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