New Year, New Directions?

I just received a renewal notice for my blog. It's been almost a year of blogging for me. Being in my sixties seems a bit like being an adolescent except the future seems shorter and there are the inevitable losses.

It is almost a year since my father died and our lives have gone on. Life is like that, I guess. When I was a girl at school, I used to think that if my name disappeared from the class list, I would soon be forgotten no matter how hard I tried or how successful I was.

Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.- Thoreau

Since I was a young student, this quote by Henry David Thoreau has caused me to stop and think about  
what I was doing and why.  I have been retired for two and a half years and right now I feel a little lost and lonely. Hardly a day goes by that I don't think about teaching. I don't miss the sameness of going to the job but I miss the "big ideas" and the possibility of touching the life of a young person. The Arts One professor who chose to read Walden with his first year students did not know how it would affect me. When I chose a story for children, I always hoped that a least one child would feel even a momentary connection.

When I write my blog, I hope for the same connection with my readers. I am not a wardrobe guru, a gourmet chef or an interior decorator. What I have to share are the challenges and the delights of being an almost 62 year-old woman. I face the next year with lots of uncertainties:will I continue to travel if my husband doesn't come, do I need to find a new way to teach, will I grow my grey hair out  ( I really like The Hostess' hair)…. The list goes on forever.

As I think about almost a year of writing, I recognize the dedication of those bloggers who have continued to share their lives with others over several years. Although I started to read blogs only 18 months ago, I feel a connection to a community of bloggers. 

I don't know where the next year will take me:geographically, emotionally or spiritually. There are no roadmaps for ageing wisely and graciously but I know that I will continue to learn from the experiences  of others and I hope that at least one reader will read my words and feel a connection.

An afterthought: when I retired, a gifted student that I worked with presented me with a Thoreau mug which is part of the legacy of my long ago Arts One professor.

Only through our connectedness to others can we really know and enhance the self. And only through working on the self can we begin to enhance our connectedness to others.
Harriet Goldhor Lerner


  1. Thoreau's writing has influenced me since I was in high school. I have a copy of Walden and I read it from time to time. Anne Morrow Lindbergh's A Gift from the the Sea is another favourite of mine too.
    Enjoy growing your hair out and embracing the tinsel! New Year New Dreams sounds like you are ready for some transformative changes.

  2. What a coincidence! Anne Morrow Lindbergh is another one of my favourites. Did you read her daughter's book about her mother's last years? Now that we are retired, there are so many opportunities for reading.


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