Men Are People Too
Contributor

It's interesting how we see all experiences from our own perspective. Mine is predictably female. And so, without giving it much thought, I figured my experience - shared by many women of a certain age - was a distinctly female one. Not so, as it turns out. While discussing living passioniately with friends, both male and female, it seems that the search for meaning and joy is not restricted to the fairer sex. Just because they don't talk about it as much, doesn't mean that men of a certain age are not also searching for that which makes them feel passionate. A biker friend of mine is involved with a charitable organization which helps children with cancer. He himself cut off many inches of hair and donated it for the benefit of others. He's making a difference. A neighbour, past his 50th birthday, recently took up mountain biking, a sport usually reserved for men half his age. Fresh from an outing to the escarpment, sporting angry bruises to prove it, he couldn't be happier. He's raised his kids, and he is now focusing on what brings him joy. Another male neighbour is exploring his love of photography and running (separately - I don't think he takes pictures while he runs; that would be dangerous.) It was actually a male colleague who brought Roz Savage to my attention. Roz is an eco-warrior who changed her life radically by leaving her former spouse and home behind, and began rowing around the world to bring attention to environmental issues. A colleague of mine, not too far past his 40th birthday, decided he was not satisfied with the status quo and so, in a life-altering decision, is going back to school for his Ph.D. Yes, it affects his family. Yes, it means significant changes. But, as he points out, it's his life, and it's half over. One of my readers even commented that my blog - obviously geared towards gatherers - had attracted a hunter. The common denominator here is that middle-age seems to bring about a time of reflection for some of us, hunters and gatherers alike. We feel compelled to find meaning in what we are doing, and doing what is meaningful. We have very little patience for that which doesn't conribute to our own growth or to the benefit of the community. I think that's a good thing. Agricultural revolution - industrial revolution - technological revolution - evolution revolution. We boomers make up a good portion of the population. We can make a difference. As for the picture of Hugh Jackman, well, I have no idea if Hugh is a self-aware man. But he sure is pretty. About the author, Sharron Richardson. After the sudden and unexpected loss of her brother at 46, Sharron realized she was on automatic pilot. She made a decision to live her life on purpose, and with style. She created a social group for boomer women and realized many of her peers were struggling with redefining themselves at mid-life. She started a blog to share her own journey, and in so doing, has created a community to inspire, celebrate, and share in this journey of self-discovery. She speaks to groups, both large and small, about living rather than existing. She is fashioning a life, one fabulous outfit at a time, and is encouraging others to do the same. Passionista | Writer | Speaker email [email protected] blog www.fashionista2passionista.com join http://www.meetup.com/Fabulous-40-West-End-Women/ find me on Facebook follow me on Twitter @Sharron_R Living passionately is always in style.

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Comments
  • Jocelyn, I’ll admit I barely got past the picture of that beautiful man to read the post. Sigh.

  • Jocelyn Chia

    Hey, wasn't it in Yes Man (the movie with Jim Carey) that a group of them ran and took photos of things they passed by? Maybe it can be done after all...

  • Jocelyn Chia

    I must send this to my ex colleague. She probably won't get past the picture to reading the post though. I think she still has a HJ poster up on her office wall :)

  • This is a fantastic photograph to go with the article. Very attention getting. Thanks for that! As I read on, I wholeheartedly agree. It took the death of my father and my fortieth birthday to recognize that now is the time. I have many friends about this age, both male and female who concur. I enjoyed your post.

  • Sharron Richardson

    Thanks Lisa. It seems it sometimes takes a crisis to bring about awareness which, for me, was the silver lining after a difficult time. Re the picture, well, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do :)

  • Kevin Camp

    I think often it's knowing where to look for people who do have it. Sometimes we limit or qualify where we channel our focus, and looking outside the box, we can usually find others like us.

  • Sharron Richardson

    Thanks for that Kevin. I find it very encouraging that it is not only boomers who are focused on meaningful pursuits. A 20-something I was chatting with today said she thought people either "got it" or didn't. Then there are the folks who "get it" with just a little inspiration and effort. Took me 48 years to "get it". Better late than pregnant!!

  • Kevin Camp

    I sort of straddle the gap between Generation X and Generation Y, though I am more indebted in my outlook on life towards X. I find that the human condition, regardless of age or gender, provided we're open with ourselves, is full of introspection and searching for meaning. Sometimes it takes the first awareness that we are, indeed, mortal, to facilitate it. I find that every person's journey is different---some are farther along than others, but we're all on the same path.