Those are powerful words from #1 New York Times bestselling author Anna Quindlen. My husband emailed me a couple of weeks ago and said, "You need to buy this book."* The note included a link to Quindlen's new memoir Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake. Shawn knows I like memoirs (the fact that I've written one is a clue) but I wanted to know why he thought I should read this one. He said he saw Quindlen on "The Morning Joe", and so I went off into Google land in search of the video.
In the interview, Quindlen talks about how she's working on a commencement speech. She says to the graduates: "I was you five minutes ago."
How many of you feel that way? That you blinked your eyes and here you are?
But Quindlen finds this realization encouraging. In an interview with "CBS This Morning", Quindlen says that even though she will turn 60 this year, she feels 41. And yet, she likes her life so much more than she did when she was 41.
I'm 37 and all I can say is I'll have what she's having.
Whatever makes you feel like your life just keeps getting better—I want that. Because I'll tell you what depresses and scares and overwhelms me: It's this notion that I'm in the prime of my life. That here I am, arriving at the peak. Or worse. That I've already peaked and am on the way down.
I look at Anna Quindlen, a woman two decades older than me, healthy and radiant and telling me that she loves her life. I find that encouraging.
She says when you're younger you spend a lot of time backstopping yourself. Asking am I good enough? and listening to all the voices saying you should be this or that. Then she got to 50 and started saying I don't care. She started feeling like a 5-year-old again. And she says getting that feeling back was liberating.
I personally don't want to wait another day to stop "backstopping" myself.
What about you?
*Yes, of course I bought the book. And if you'd like to have my blog delivered to your reader or inbox, click here.