Fearless-Certainty becomes Cold-Empty-Indifference
by David M
(Healdsburg, CA US)
Somewhere after High School I seemed to be driven by a mission designed by a higher power.
Shortly after my 52nd birthday, I started to change, show down, begin to ask questions about my life, behaviours, goals, desires, needs, wants, etc.....never had to before.
It was all so clear, and now it seems hidden from me. I think I actually did the hiding from myself. I have no idea where anything belongs. And everyone else I've talked with isn't quite sure either.
I started picking goals out of a hat, listening to my parents again, trying new things and failing miserably, and months later wondering what the hell was I thinking. And now when I look in the mirror I don't recognize the expression on my face.
Things that drove me, inspired me, enriched me, fulfilled me no longer had any meaning.
Now I am 55, and am wondering when the darkness will subside.
I know I gotta take care of me first before I can effectively finish raising my youngest son, 17 yrs. But exactly what or who is that me?
I know everyone is subtly different and changes vary per individual. It's all so logical, but I'm not logical at all. I'm searching for feelings.
I do so remember wanting to be a grandparent so I could emulate my grandfather... but that man seemed to have some great mission in life all the way to his grave. Perhaps we live in another time? Am I just freaking impatient? Noel's response
It sounds to me as though you are in a classical midlife transition. You will find some 'fellow journeyers' on my Men's Stories
page. Many of these men went though similar struggles, and are now past them.
In my own case, at about age 50 I suddenly lost interest in what I had been passionate about, lost my sense of mission, lost energy, confidence, libido, and for about five year was in a mild depression.
I hired a personal coach to help me clarify my mission, but it didn't help. I was in a transition, and simply had to wait it out.
I started to 'emerge' at about age 55, and now that I am turning 64, my life is full, meaningful, and exciting again. The benefit of the transition is that I have been 'deepened' in a way that is hard to describe.
As far as taking care of yourself first, before you can effectively finish raising your son, I suggest you take care of yourself as well as you can WHILE effectively raising your son. He won't be with you much longer, and he needs your effective parenting now. To me, an effective parent is one who lets his son know he loves and admires him, and who sets clear boundaries for the son to come up against as be grows into a man.
And don't worry, by the time you have grandchildren, the chances are very good that you will be the kind of grand parent your grandfather was.
Some books you may find useful are:Balancing Heaven and Earth: A Memoir
by Robert JohnsonThe Way of Transition: Embracing Life's Most Difficult Moments
by William Bridges, andCrossing the Soul's River: A Rite of Passage for Men
by William O. Roberts.
And remember... this too shall pass.