Most everyone in the second half of their lives has learned that one ages on the outside, but not the inside. The soul is timeless; the body is not. I literally jump when I see myself on the little screen at Walmart's self-checkout because I don't recognize that old woman at first glance.
I'm not ready to sit in a rocking chair and wait for the afterlife. I still have too much to do, and I'm realizing that I can do things at this age that I never thought possible. I've found my second wind.
The website Second Wind is all about making the second half of life vibrant, relevant, meaningful, knowledgable, and healthy. It’s finding new strength to continue being an active and contributing member of your family, circle of friends, community, and society. It’s refusing to be put out to pasture, and if you’re there, whether by your choosing or others’, climb back over the fence! If you are on the downhill side of life, throw your arms up in the air, scream joyously, enjoy the ride, and stop settling for invisibility and irrelevance because of your age.
That’s what my friends and I have decided.
When two of my close friends were involved in a serious vehicular accident in late 2019 that meant lengthy hospital stays and months of recovery, I began to look for online magazines aimed at older women to help them pass the time during their rehabilitation. At first search, I only found AARP and Reader’s Digest. I know there are articles and blogs for senior women out there, but these sites don’t show up on the first few search pages. But I realized, too, that there should be a site solely dedicated to women living the second half of their life, and oftentimes alone.
As for me, I've been writing for over thirty years as a newspaper and online columnist, novelist, children's story writer, and more. I've worked as a teacher (in private school, home school, and public school), a public library manager and public school librarian, and spent six years as an information specialist doing online research for an educational search engine for K-12 students. My bachelor's degree is in education art and business, and my master's degree is in library and information science. And I'm still learning!
I am very aware that the words I pen are formed from the information I've gathered, read, listened to and let steep in my mind until I come to some sort of understanding about something. I realize that on certain topics I may be writing from a place of limited knowledge, previous prejudices, and inaccurate information, and for that I apologize. I am a truth seeker, though, and am willing to change my perspective when I realize I'm wrong. I know I am well into my last stage of life, and I don't want to leave life with my mind sliding into a dark, clueless fog. I want the lights on in my mind and my eyes wide open, and I plan to live life with love, joy, kindness, and truth, which I've learned from a relationship with my God.
Women in the U.S. live on average 78 years, and half of that is 39, but you can decide when your second half of life starts. That could be when the nest empties, when grandkids arrive, when one is living alone for whatever reason, when one starts a new career, or when one retires, or many decades before, etc. The focus of this website is women, but everyone is welcome.
I know some extraordinary women in their second half of life who are doing life well. They continue to learn; they pay attention to eating healthy and are staying fit. They are tech savvy, but still retain useful knowledge of ‘old-school’ ways if the power or Internet goes out. Most have faith in their Creator, but respect others who believe differently. They are kind and helpful to those less fortunate. Even at their ages, they aren’t afraid to try new things and take risks. You will meet these women and more on the pages of Second Wind.
Join us on these journeys; find your second wind, and make the second half of your life as meaningful and as exciting as the first.
Donna Casey Van Cleve