"Modern Love" of the "New York Times" just released their favorites over the years and that inspired me to think about my own "Modern Love". I think that love and relationships both shift sometime after 50. I know that mine have.
Sex, romance, and the possibility of an enduring relationship with a sexually seasoned woman brings different gifts than a woman in her 20s or 30s. Maybe I am not as pretty as I once was. I have survived losses and betrayals I didn't expect and I have made some big whopper mistakes. And we can talk for hours about some of my ill-considered decisions. I have been a stick-out-my-chin kinda woman, always testing the fates. And I have fallen on my ass a few times totally without grace.
What I know now is different than before -- that much I know for certain. First of all, I am way more humble and believe far more in my own resiliency. If any relationship that I am in fails, I now know that I can survive that. When I was younger -- even just a few years ago -- survival felt unlikely with a broken heart. Broken hearts literally took me to my knees.
Now I am less afraid of endings, so I'm more likely to begin beginnings! I'm more willing to make invitations to new people to begin friendships or playships. I will more willingly follow my heart and gamble on love and romance. I am willing to stay longer in love because I believe in the power of staying and the transformation that can happen and deepen if people are only willing to love harder, shift and communicate. But I am also willing to pack my bags and go.
The younger me wouldn't have. She would have stayed well passed her prime and thought that any relationship disruption was all about her own craziness. If only I did better or more. That she was not enough, and the cause of anything less than perfect.
But after 50, you understand that a relationship is a team sport (and please apply that "team sport" spirit to all of your relationships -- broaden it out from marriage to lovership to friendships to work relationships).
When you are older than 50, you want to expend those precious resources that you have spent time gathering and honing. You know ... body confidence, erotic awareness, and sexual playfulness to live the time you have on this planet joyfully and fully. You want to be with people that want to meet you there and take turns giving and receiving. Yes. Sex and a relationship with a sexually seasoned woman is just a different thing. She isn't who she was anymore -- and that can change daily.
And here is the best thing of all: she is riper than she has ever been in her life to enjoy it all.
Ask a woman older than 50 what she is up to and she is likely to say, "Planning the next adventure."
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