In every stage of life there is the opportunity to grow, explore, transition and retain a sense of wonder around the water sports that so positively impact our lives. Writing this in April of 2022, I am mentally preparing for the next birthday when I turn 73 in June.
73!!! That’s a number that scares me, but ABSOLUTELY does not define me. I bet there are plenty of you at various decades and ages from 30-80+ who feel the same way. One comes to mind and that this a woman I met a few years back while paddling the 8-mile down wind course in the mighty, churning Columbia River from Viento to Hood River. That woman, Seddon Wylde – grandmother to Fiona Wylde – just turned 80. She continues to charge and play as a powerful water woman.
On the other end of the age spectrum is world champion SUP racer, Seychelle, – who is just entering a new phase of life as a mother. Uber-cool writer, Evelyn O’Doherty summed it up in her recent article for Standup Journal, SIC Women of WaterSports.
All of the women mentioned in the article shared valuable gems of wisdom and insight. To me, the most profound was this from Seychelle, ““Be patient. Hold your vision but don’t be afraid to let it shift or change as you evolve as a woman. Life never seems to unfold as we expect it to. Women, especially, can be hard on themselves when we have a goal. But, when we take the pressure off is usually when we perform better. So, rediscover your joy! And just go have fun.”
So looking forward to the Summer I turn 73 I think my vision will shift a bit. From over a decade of SUP and surfing adventures, to the past few years windsurfing – I think flying with a wing on water is coming up. Living in the high desert of Central Oregon will make aspects of that vision challenging – but I am game!
How about you? How will you embrace your next stage of life or life situation? Envision YOUR evolution, your goals and, as Seychelle says, “Rediscover your joy.”