Monday, October 22, 2007

Do Boomer Women Have it All Together?

I think the majority of us Baby Boomer Women maintain a positive outlook to help support a strong sense of self. To others, that may seem like we have it all together. Maybe we do. I think we've become stronger women as we've moved into our boomer years.

For me, keeping a positive attitude works as well. Being negative isn't an option for me. What I've found I've learned through the years is that I have to make time for myself. No one else is going to do it for me.

If I don't go for a walk, no one else is going to tap me on the shoulder and say, "Dear, you really must go take a walk." Well, my dog will remind me that we have to go for a walk, but he's not consciously looking out for me.

Women, in general, have a really hard time putting their needs first. We've had it ingrained in us for so long that we are caretakers and must take care of everyone else before we take care of ourselves.

I think the notion of "having it together" goes along with taking care of ourselves. If we do that, most other issues in our lives have a tendency to fall into place. We're better equipped mentally, physically, and emotionally to handle any bumps that come along our way.

I know that when I feel good about myself and my life, then I tend to think more positive, and when thinking positive, I don't let temporary setbacks get me down. I can overcome self doubt.

When I take care of myself, then I'm better able to take care of others. And that shows in how others perceive us. As boomers, I think we're more secure in how we project ourselves. We're not pretending to be someone we're not.

While growing up, we're our parent's child. A girlfriend, sister, or aunt. Then we're a wife and we try to be the woman our husband wants. We are an employee in a working environment. We become what our bosses ask for, to fulfill our job requirements. When we become mothers, we give ourselves over to being the perfect mom for our children. We try to be all these different personalities, all the while eventually learning who we really are.

We face the reality of who we are to ourselves, seeing our inner self, maybe for the first time. Learning how to take care of ourselves first, gives us the confidence to be the great women we are.

Baby Boomer Women.

8 comments:

Debbie said...

Oh Vicki I really could relate to this story!
As you might know by now, I lost my mother not that long ago, which left me watching over my father. Now, this was NOT something that I really had time to consider, and with that 'pre-recorded tape'playing in the background of my mind, could only think the way my mother would have thought. So, in a blink of an eye dad had sold their home and moved in with us-'US'...my husband and my 2 sons!

Oh joy, just what I needed, testosterone bouncing off each wall, and me trying to keep order.
As much as my father would hate to hear this, he was probably the most difficult and at times, behaved just like my youngest child! How did this happen? Someone had to look after him....but what about me? Dad hated me being gone form the house because it meant HE was alone. I wasn't working full-time because of my own health issues, but yet each 3 hour shift I put in over at the Leagues Club was 3 hours too long for him. He was miserable and making me feel likewise!

He wasn't sad when I threw in the towel, but my husband was! ugh! We needed that extra income so it meant finding something else, and fast!
I quickly enrolled in a course through Tafe[college]where I studied hard! Four days a week, gruelling assignments and homework, taking care of the house and the family, then dealing with dad's rollercoaster flow of emotions in between! The course involved a module in counselling, what a life saver! Through this and the wise words of our FEMALE teacher,I had found my own tools to get MY life back!

It wasn't easy, but when I called a 'family meeting' to the table, it gave ME a chance to say how I felt. As much as my hubby supported my grief and frustrations, he couldn't do anything to change the situation...nor could my kids, and I didn't expect them to.
So, my feelings were out and dad, well he was shocked!
He stayed with us for four years, almost driving me nuts, but when the offer came to relocate him back to where he & mum had originated, he jumped at the idea! Mind you, I STILL had the job and responsibility of staying until he was settled, but when it came time to for me to return to my family,I felt a sense of accomplishment. I'd stood my ground, reminding myself that I was entitled to a 'life' and this choice remains with me today! I have managed to publish 4 books, design websites, write for magazines and also become a DIVA!

I have always been someone's wife, mother, daughter, carer....at 47, my life is just beginning!!!!

Thanks so much for allowing me to share.

Heidi Caswell said...

I can relate. Raising 7 kids they were my whole life. Much of what I enjoyed doing I did with the kids, hiked, swam, anything creative. In fact teachers would marvel how creative my children were.

One teacher reminded me how I'd answered that question years back, I told her that my home was not the most organized place, that you'd find a contructs project here, another child on the keyboard experimenting for music, one on the computer learning and creating 3-d artwork, a drawing here, painting there, orgami all over.

I didn't get stressed, nor tell them what to make, create, or learn.

As my youngest entered school I took income tax course and was good at what I did, helping others save money, etc. But I learned it was not me, I much happier being creative, dropped it a year ago.

The hardest thing I found was to spend money just on me for something I wanted. I was hard to justify buying a $1000 camera just so I could continue a hobby. But I did, and enjoy what I do.

I've found that I'm much happier when I speak up for me,

Heidi

Vicki M. Taylor said...

Heidi and Debbie, thanks so much for sharing. If life has taught us anything, it's that whatever we're given, we can handle.

We're strong, capable women.

Mary Eileen said...

Vicki--

I can so relate to your words on womanhood and the seasons of our lives. I feel myself growing and changing in new ways at midlife and it is exciting. I AM speaking up for myself much more and I AM doing a lot of things just for ME! Actually, the years past menopause have been pretty darned good!

Thanks for your beautifully written reminder.

Vicki M. Taylor said...

Good for you, Mary Eileen!! I'm glad you liked my post.

Vicki M. Taylor said...

This comment is from Beverly Mahone. Thank you, Beverly.

Vicki,

After I turned 40 I took a long hard look at my life. My marriage had fallen apart, my job was totally stressful and I was coming home so tired that i couldn't be a good mom to my daughter. I was also physically sick but didn't know it.

It took my failing health to get me to realize that if i didn't take care of me, no one else would so I began to meditate and focus on what was really important in my life. I started weeding out the "garbage" and found the true power in PRAYER.

What I am discovering at 50 is although I may not have it all together, I know exactly where to turn to renew my strength.

Terri said...

Hey Vicki...It was so great to see you at the conference this past weekend.
I can sure relate to your article here about Boomer Women.
Love your blog and I'll be back to visit often. Please keep in touch!
Terri

Vicki M. Taylor said...

Terri, It was great spending time with you at the FWA conference. I'd like to stay in touch. Please come and visit my website often.