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Guerrilla Aging: Navigating the Third Half of Life

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Some time ago, Life in the Boomer Lane had the brilliant idea of starting a second blog, titled “Guerrilla Aging.” Because whatever talent she has does not extend to spelling, she bought the website “guerillaaging.com” After discovering her error, she purchased the correct website. And, because whatever talent she has does not also extend to having a normal attention span, she dropped the second blog and used the now-extra time to sample a variety of new ice cream flavors in the frozen food section of the supermarket.

Having run out of new ice cream flavors, LBL would now like to resurrect Guerrilla Aging as part of her Life in the Boomer Lane blog. Here is what LBL wrote as an intro to the other blog:

If the title confuses you, you are in the right place. We are women navigating a part of life that hasn’t been navigated before. Often, we do so in secret. While the media focuses on the younger, the firmer, the more camera-ready, we “women of a certain age” age behind the scenes, beneath the radar. We often have only our peer group for guidance. Hence, guerrilla aging. Aging for the subversive.

If you are making the astute observation that there is no such thing as a third half of anything, let me assure you that we are in it. We are in the place that doesn’t exist, or at least, hasn’t existed before. Either we can’t be our mothers’ generation or we choose not to be. We are literally making it up as we go along. The possibilities are not only endless, they are scary and exhilarating and confusing and energizing.

We might be the first generation of women in our families who went to college. Or maybe the first generation to work outside the home. Or to divorce. Or to choose not to marry. Or to travel. Or to marry outside of our religion. Or to live without the benefit of marriage. Or to toss our aprons away with our bras. Or to do any number of things that broke ground and possibly broke our parent’s hearts. Or, at the very least, mystified them. And all the while we were doing these things, we were expected to stay the course, to conform, to go along, to be what our mothers and grandmothers had been.

LBL’s vision for this weekly feature is to have a format for women in the third half of life to speak about what is real. About sexuality or the lack thereof. About loneliness, whether we are single or not. About learning to respect who we are, in spite of a media that doesn’t. About loss, and about accepting loss when it seems the only thing that isn’t being lost is our weight. About gratitude. About the endless things that our mothers didn’t experience, our doctors don’t know/care about, our partners and/or children don’t want to hear. And ultimately, about the sheer joy of having discovered who and what we are, in a way that is hard-won and new and brings endless possibility to our lives.

Guerrilla Aging will appear each Friday in the Life in the Boomer Lane blog. This feature isn’t intended to be a solo endeavor. LBL invites you to guest post. If nobody submits anything in any given week, LBL will write the post herself. But she would rather use the space to showcase what you have to say.

Here are the rules: You must be a woman-of-a-certain age. You must write to share your experiences with others, to share your wisdom with others, to inspire others. This is not about victimhood or anger (although LBL will allow a bit of anger when it’s directed at those segments of society that misrepresent and/or dismiss older women). Mostly, LBL is looking for what you write as a vehicle for change. Simply put, we want to change the conversation about women over the age of 50.

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