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YOUR Midlife Symphony – the Proactive Way to Avoid Irrelevance and Invisibility

Welcome to Leanne Le Cras.

Thank you so much for writing this guest post about your blogging journey for publication on Always Write. As part of the hobby blogger community, come in and sit down at the table.

Enjoy some of my husband’s special blend of coffee, tea, or blended mocha and one of my hot chocolate chip cookies.

Leanne shares how she takes a “proactive approach” to life to prevent becoming “invisible and irrelevant.” Her post reminds us that it is good to assess and redefine our lives NOW – no matter how old we are. Let’s listen in to her SYMPHONY.

My Midlife Symphony

Firstly, I’d just like to say thank you to Marsha for inviting me to be a guest on her lovely blog. I met Marsha through our blogging friend Erica and a post about writing a 4 sentence eulogy (yes a weird but wonderful encounter!) On a different note, today I’d like to share my journey into creating my Midlife Symphony, and the joy it’s brought with it. 

LIFE’S SHORT

I started blogging six years ago – I was in my early 50’s and feeling like life was a bit blah. I think it was dawning on me that I was hitting the second half of life and I needed to become more proactive in preventing a slide downhill into feeling invisible and irrelevant. Blogging introduced me to an amazing new world full of interesting women (and a few men) who wrote about living their lives with purpose and positivity – they were thriving and embracing getting older – I loved that, and hopefully now I’ve become one of them.

I also heard about the idea of choosing a Word of the Year rather than making a New Year’s resolution and it’s been something I’ve embraced every January for the past 5 years. Sometimes my #WOTY just leaps out and other times it can take a while to arrive. This year I struggled with finding a word that encapsulated what I was feeling – basically I wanted something that said “Life’s short – make the most of every moment” and finally at the last moment it dawned on me that the quote I’d been using as my desktop background summed up beautifully what I was trying to get at and it was encapsulated by the very last word – SYMPHONY.

WHY SYMPHONY?

The quote was by William Henry Channing and goes like this:

“To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion, to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly, to listen to stars and birds, to babes and sages, with open heart, to bear all cheerfully, to all bravely await occasions, hurry never. In a word, to let the spiritual unbidden and unconscious grow up through the common. This is to be my symphony.”

It articulated perfectly all that I’d been gradually moving towards over the last five years – a life of contentment and appreciation, needing less, slowing down, focusing on what brings joy, and living on my own terms rather than how I thought others wanted me to be.

I finished work last year and spent many months recovering from the toxic environment I’d been dealing with. I realized I didn’t want to work any longer, I was happy with what we had – living frugally had paid off and we were debt free with no desire to amass more “stuff”. What I wanted to focus my attention on was making the most of the time I have left – investing in relationships, sinking my roots in deep, becoming a wise woman with a deep soul, and just being at peace with myself and the world around me. The quote spoke to me on so many levels, and it’s become my Midlife Symphony – the perfect direction for 2020.

ENJOYING ALL THE NOTES

So far this year has had a lot of ups and downs, the low notes included a pandemic that came in and turned our lives upside down, we’ve seen rioting and politics rampaging across the globe, financial failings, greedy hoarding, and social media in-fighting –  sometimes I think we all wonder what’s going on? But through it all, there are still so many high notes – I loved the community’s response to lockdown, teddies, rainbows, goodwill, singing, offers of help, government assistance, donations, appreciation of care workers, and so much more. People stepped up during the crisis and that makes my heart happy.

This quote from Albert Camus always reminds me that the world around us can be looking pretty grim, but we always have within us the ability to choose happiness.

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.”

I like to think that my Symphony is all about choosing Summer every day despite the turmoil around me, about finding joy and living my best life right now in a calm and measured fashion. It’s about being true to myself and authentic in everything, and of course, shining my light and bringing some sunshine into the lives of others.

SHARING MY OPUS

When I started writing about how I wanted my Symphony to play out, I thought about all the other women out there who were also making the most of Midlife and I decided to invite anyone who was interested in sharing their story to write a guest post for me. In the six months that I hosted my Midlife Symphony guest series I had 15 guest posts (even one brave bloke put his hand up!) and they’ve added so much variety and interest to my blog this year. 

I feel like we’re all part of this second half of life orchestra and the notes resonate more perfectly because of that. I hope for each one of us, Midlife is all about caring, sharing, and becoming our best selves, and ultimately we’ll leave a legacy that reflects our own unique Symphony because you really can’t ask for much more than that.

BIO and Links 

Leanne lives in the beautiful southwest of Western Australia. She spends way too much of her spare time blogging about the highlights of Midlife at Cresting the Hill and shares the rest of her leisure time with her husband and two cats. Her two adult children have grown and flown, married and settled in the city, with an empty nest consolation prize of two delightful grandgirls to keep her young and on her toes. 

LINKS:

Blog:  Cresting the Hill

Facebook: Cresting the Hill

Pinterest: Leanne|crestingthehill

Email: leanne.lecras@gmail.com

Reminder All Y’all Hobby Bloggers

Carrot Ranch launches this year’s fabulous Rodeo Flash Fiction (and Poetry) Contest on October 5th. Week Three will happen RIGHT HERE on Always Write.

on this blog, Marsha Lee. You’re hosting a flash fiction contest on October 20th. Wahoo

26 replies »

  1. I’m loving how the word of the year is playing out for you Leanne, and I adore that Albert Camus quote. It reminds me of another about how some people get wet while others feel the rain, and some can see a weed in a field of flowers while others see wildflowers in a field of weeds.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jo – yes, what I’ve learned since hitting Midlife is that it’s all about the attitude you choose and how you respond to what life tosses your way. I choose to dance in the rain whenever possible – because if you’re going to get wet you might as well enjoy it!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the comment, Jo. Leanne has a great attitude and in these crazy times, it’s necessary to have many reminders of how important that is. 🙂

      Like

  2. Hi Marsha – thanks so much for having me as your guest and for sharing my story. It’s been a pleasure to connect with you and I’m looking forward to meeting some of your readers too x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Leanne, the thanks are all mine. Your post turned out so beautifully. It is a lot of work writing and “illustrating” our posts. Each one takes me about ten hours, so to do a guest post in addition to your own posts is to donate a real treasure. Better still, it forms deeper connections between us and our followers and them with each other. It’s a win-win all the way. And I would be honored to write a post for you as well once the craziness in my life dies down just a bit. 🙂

      Like

    • Hi Donna, I’m so happy to have both of you stop by. We both discovered blogging and it’s a great way to enjoy the symphony of life. Thanks again for your comment. 🙂

      Like

  3. Hello Marsha and Leanne. I love Leanne’s word this year: symphony. It’s one that can mean many things, and the Channing quote is perfect. Leanne’s journey has been inspiring for me, and it is a pleasure being introduced to Marsha’s blog. So thank you ladies. Have a wonderful week!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Christie – it’s been a great word of the year – lots of different layers to it and I think both quotes speak to something deep within me – both are reflections of my world view and I love it when I see other bloggers with similar thoughts and approaches – positivity always wins!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for visiting and commenting, Christie. Leanne wrote a fabulous post and her positivity is inspiring. We humans gravitate towards those who inspire us. Have a wonderful day. 🙂

      Like

  4. Hi Leanne, you said you hope to become a wise woman with a deep soul and I think you have achieved that! Your posts are always positive and I think you help others see the positive side of things. I love the quotes you have included here and they are a good reminder to make the most of all the good that we are and have. I try to stay positive and not let the harshness of life wear me down. It helps to find a positive community out in the world- however far away!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Michele – thanks for your lovely compliment. I do try really hard to see the positive in things – life throws us lots of curve balls, so sitting around whinging about them would just make me even more sad. Looking for the bright side is always the best choice and it’s amazing how much goodness there is in the world (even in these weird covid times).

      Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Michele, thanks for stopping by my blog to support your friend, Leanne. I am blessed by her. She is not only positive, she’s forgiving and understanding. We will probably look back on 2020 and remember the funny things that happened as a result of the crazy year. It’s like a bad trip. It has to be bad at times to be remembered. 🙂 Have a great weekend. 🙂 (No bad times – unmemorable,)

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hey girls, thank you for sharing the link to this post, Leanne, on your blog. Your symphony is music to my ears. My word of the year is believe. I think it kind of goes hand-in-hand with your thoughts on your WOTY. This year has been a struggle but with all the low notes have come high notes. With all the difficult days, there have also been quieter days where I have been able to enjoy this slower pace of life. My daughters had some difficult news on Monday from their father’s family. While we were very saddened and discouraged by the news, I believed things would look brighter the next morning. And they did.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Leslie – I’m sorry your girls had bad news to deal with – at the time being there seems to be a lot of that around, but you’re right, once we sit and process it for a while, we can move forward again – there’s always light at the end of the tunnel isn’t there? And I’ve enjoyed the quiet times that have been part of the response to the pandemic too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Leanne you have lovely friends who support your writing. What a blessing that we as bloggers never expected when we first started on this blogging journey. 🙂 Thanks again for taking your time to write this guest post.

        Like

  6. Thanks for sharing Leanne’s symphony Marsha, it’s great to see others enjoying this time of life. Leanne has loads to offer midlifer bloggers and I always enjoy reading her posts. My WOTY is Jump and I’m trying to jump my way through the year but it’s not been quite the year I had expected! Lovely to meet you 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lovely to meet you too, Debbie, This has been the year of years. We’ve never had one like it in my memory. Hopefully things will settle down in a short time. Thanks for stopping by. It was a pleasure to have Leanne write a guest post. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Marsha, Thank you for featuring Leanne here. Leanne always shares a great deal of wisdom and gems. She often brings new perspectives to the joys and challenges in life. I especially like the concept of “Midlife Symphony.”

    Leanne, you are right about “blogging introduced me to an amazing new world full of interesting women (and a few men)…” William Henry Channing’s quote is beautiful on many levels.

    You describe well your personal philosophy. The words you share empower others to choose happiness and live their best life. You make me think of the concept, “the best is yet to come.” Thank you! I love everything about this post! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Erica/Erika. Thanks for stopping by. You are our first mutual friend. Leanne did an excellent job writing her post and inspiring us to be positive as we enjoy the second halves of our lives. Sometimes I forget!!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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Marsha

Marsha

Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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