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By Cathie Sibley
La Bella Amore Italian Bistro 

The Last Half

Taste of Italian


I'll be turning fifty while this issue of The Loop is on the news stands. The last half of my life is here whether I'm ready for it or not. Well... really it's more like the last third most likely since my family isn't known for its history making longevity.

Instead of looking at the last half through melancholy glasses, I'm kind of excited about it.

The first fifty years blazes by at an inconceivable speed, the speed of time; and, if I've learned anything, I've learned that the busier we are the faster the clock ticks – or so it appears.

It seems like we spend most or all of our younger years trying to get somewhere. In our youth it's all about careers and buying houses and cars and toys. We concentrate our efforts on raising families and hopefully (although not in my case) figuring out how to make our marriages work.

The way my life is now is not the way I envisioned it would be when I hit the half century mark. I thought I'd be happily married with a nice collection of grandchildren that I could teach to fish. I thought I would be ensconced in a home that was nearly paid for with a husband who was looking forward to a retirement that included traveling.

I did not think I would be eight years into owning and running a restaurant and single. Didn't see that coming!

Well I did a little since it's what I've been doing for the last eight years, but – in the big picture – it's not what I saw.

Now that it's here, the last half that is, what am I going to do? I'm going to live that's what. I'm going to learn to let go a little. The first half teaches you that you really don't have control of anything anyway so why bother. It seems that even if you wear a bra every day from the time you're ten years old, your chest still falls into your drawers. It's all a gamble. I might have another fifty years in this life or I might have another day...

Here's what I'm going to do.

I'm going to build friendships that are true and honest. I'm going to go where I've never been as often as possible. I'm going to cherish today because there is never a promise of tomorrow. I'm going to remind my children often that I'd really love to be a grandmother. I'm going to wear flat shoes as often as I can (even when it's not fashionable) and comfortable underwear all the time. I'm going to burn my spanx because you cannot cram ten pounds of stuff into a five pound bag and still plan on breathing. I'm going to smile as much as possible and let myself cry sometimes too. I'm going to be brave and ask for help when I need it instead of doing it all on my own. I'm going to watch old movies and read good books and cook delicious food.

I'm going to thank God for it all every day.

Peace and blessings to all and may your life be beautiful, no matter what half you're in.


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