Midlife love

The Amazing Power of Love & Passion

Our passions choose us. We do not choose our passions.

When I think back over the passions I have pursued in my sixty years on this planet, I know for certain that they chose me. As I lived my life, various topics excited my passions for unclear reasons. It perhaps had the most to do with who I am.

One life-long passion has been the pursuit of knowledge on so many topics. I think of my mind as a sponge that cannot wait to learn more in so many different areas. That’s one of the reasons why working as a reference librarian suited me so well. I tried specializing a number of times, but found I had far too many interests.

Thailand_1973 Photo for blogFirst and foremost I loved psychology, and still do. Then I became fascinated with Asia after living in Thailand at age 19. I pursued that passion through my undergrad degree and one graduate degree, but chose not to pursue the level of specialization required for a PhD. I could not see myself as a professor.

Being a librarian worked for me to some extent. I always said I would stay a librarian until something better came along. I completed a graduate degree in counseling psychology in 1995 and when I was forced out of my reference job in 2004, I moved on to professional writer and psychotherapist. One of my passions at that point was to work for myself for the rest of my life. Enough ridiculous bosses already!

After losing my job, I searched my soul for months and found that my next passion was to understand love. Love was the only thing that made my life worthwhile at that point in time. It was my goal to find one true love before I died.

By focusing all of my energy on starting my own dating service and interviewing hundreds of new members, I learned so much about the barriers to finding love later in life, the major one being a lost faith in love.

Why would anyone put themselves through that again? The risk/reward equation looked like a losing proposition to many I spoke to. I came to realize that the greatest barrier to finding love later in life was simply believing that love was possible and perhaps even inevitable with a renewed belief in its power.

By doing a fair amount of ‘soul surgery’ and then focusing all of my energy on believing in love again, love became inevitable for me. A few months later I met Mike through Match.com. We both knew very quickly that we had met our match, and yes, love is lovelier the second time around!

After a few years of marital bliss, I decided to write  How To Believe In Love Again: Opening to Forgiveness, Trust And Your Own Inner Wisdom to share what I had learned about believing in love after so many life disappointments.

Most importantly I learned not to give up if you passionately want to experience love in this lifetime:

“So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable.”  — Christopher Reeve

What is the meaning of life?

faith and fearWith all of the fear around us this week, it may feel like fear rules. That is what those who know nothing else, wish us to feel.

But there is an alternative and I wish it for all of you. This song by Wynonna Judd summarizes these feelings for me. Please go listen…  This song captures for me one of the greatest lessons of my life. It took me decades to learn that love was the best reason to continue to exist.

Soon after that discovery, I focused all of my energy and mental power on finding love just once in this lifetime. Then a wonderful teacher appeared to teach me even more about loving another person well, heart and soul.

falling in love rocksAfter ten years I know Mike is not a perfect person, but he does know how to love and care for others, and I feel honored that he chose me to love so completely.

Our love story could be any 40-year-old’s dream, which explains why ‘Falling in Love at 49’ on my previous blog “Midlife Crisis Queen” has been enjoyed by tens of thousands of readers.

Love is certainly lovelier the second time around!

Although we have faced so many challenges as a couple, we now stand together, come what may, in a solar home of our choosing. We built this home ourselves and plan to stay here until the end.

In our case, love will conquer all.

Belief is your first step towards new love!

All misfortune is but a stepping stone to fortune.  – Thoreau

Love can be tough when you’re older, divorced and wondering what’s next.  I know. At 49, after a bad divorce, I felt relatively certain my “love life” was over. What changed then? I lost my job and career a few years after my divorce…

What to do? What to do? I decided to try something completely different, I started my own dating service! I figured I needed a job AND a date. :)

self-respectThere I spent some serious time learning from hundreds of 40+ singles about what it feels like to know that you are far too young to give up on love, and yet fearful that you may be too disillusioned to ever try again. What I discovered is that there are quite a few of us who have lost our faith in love, and that included me!

So I got busy changing my mind.  With my natural stubborn streak and extensive background in psychology, I used decades of personal experience with love and disappointment to turn my attitude around.

First I began to finally value my mysterious and yet powerful personal intuitions. I quit interrupting when my heart was trying to tell me something important. Enough “rational” assessments of my situation, what did I want to happen right now?

I also knew I needed to forgive myself for everything in my past, but what was the best way to do that?

Slowly I created a formula which included finding new self-respect for where I was at, appreciating how I got there, and devising various ways to love myself into believing in love again. I began to see how much I feared love, and began searching out those experiences in my past that were keeping me stuck.

My formula included focusing on my own unique shame and trust issues, forgiving myself for past mistakes, listening to my inner wisdom, and utilizing cathartic techniques to change my beliefs about what love might have to offer me now.

My solutions worked for me!  How did I know?  I met the love of my life a few months after I started changing my mind and heart.

Learn to love yourselfNow I hate to watch others suffer because they just don’t believe anymore, so six years after I met my new love Mike, I completed my book: How To Believe In Love Again: Opening to Forgiveness, Trust, and Your Own Inner Wisdom. 

Are you ready to acknowledge that you have lost your faith in love? Read my book and then make believing in love your highest priority! It worked for me… it will work for you!

Feel free to contact me for more information or personal counseling at: MidlifeCrisisQueen@gmail.com


Do you still believe in love?

One of the most important lessons I have learned from my midlife struggles, is the need to be willing to fight for my dreams. This journey began for me back in 2004 (at age 49), when I lost my job and then spent months in introspection.

I focused on this question: What do I need to happen before I die?

I concluded that for myself I needed to find ways to believe in love again. I so wanted to find one genuine love in this lifetime. This book is a summary of what I learned in this process: I fought through a lifetime of tragedy and disappointment, did some serious soul surgery, and changed my perspective on love.

In this way I found new faith in the power of love, made my life worthwhile again, and found a great partner within a few months. We married eight months later.

We celebrated our ten anniversary this week! :)

scan0012With Mike I found true partnership, one where we work together towards shared goals. One of his lifetime goals was to build his own solar custom home with an incredible view.

This is the goal we have been working on for the past few years. So many obstacles have arisen in this process. Leaving behind our life of 20+ years in Fort Collins was our first challenge. I wrote about that extensively on my Midlife Crisis Queen blog in April and May of 2014. Suffice to say this kind of change is never easy, and it’s plain HARD on relationships!

IMGP3099We moved into a 100-year-old little house in Walsenburg Colorado, and put much into storage in June 2014. It took five months just to get a proper slab completed in this rural Colorado county.

IMGP3203We noticed every step of the construction process was costing much more than we had budgeted. We found that our contractor was not taking bids for work, but simply using his regular sub-contractors. At that point Mike decided to take over the contracting part of the process. He took bids from both local and Pueblo companies and cut over 30% off the cost of the electrical and stucco work. Our builder was not happy.

After almost a year of struggle, we were finally ready to complete the inside of our home. We had collected everything we needed to complete the kitchen, baths, etc. The response from our builder? I may be able to get to that in a few weeks. I went ballistic! And of course he hung up on me.

IMGP4056Luckily Mike apologized profusely, and we finished our house the end of July, more than a year after we moved here.  I tell you this NOT to discourage you from pursuing your own unique goals, but to warn you that pursuing dreams can get ugly sometimes.

You must be willing to fight for your dreams…


Making Long-term Commitments

“Yeah, he seems pretty cool, but would I want to push him in a wheelchair?” — Amy Schumer

scan0012When it comes to love, the question should always come up: How long do you believe you could commit to this person? Although I have to admit, it didn’t come up for me previously.

Seeing your new love at age 24 and wondering what he will be like as an old man is just, well, weird.

These things do change by age 50 or 60… a lot. My family thinks I made a BIG MISTAKE marrying my present husband at age 50, because he had and still has Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and an assortment of other physical problems.

My response is simple.  I relate with Mike better than any other human being I have ever met, and on so many different levels. Yes I have to take care of him sometimes. That is what a relationship is all about. Do not commit to this if you cannot live up to that deal. He was there for me when I fell off my bike and suffered a traumatic brain injury, fractured ribs, etc. I am certain he will be taking care of me more in the future.

We have experienced the lowest lows and the highest highs together, especially in the past few years of moving from a “safe” suburban neighborhood in Fort Collins, and building a home in rural southern Colorado. I would never have taken on something like this with anyone else, and I am certain that what we have experienced together would have destroyed most relationships.

Mike + Laura small versionAmy Schumer is funny because she says what the rest of us may be ashamed to be thinking, but there is still so much truth in asking yourself tough questions when it comes to committing to a long-term kind of love.

Waiting for Marriage

successful marriageI just heard about some new research that asks why millennials are waiting to get married. The reasons seem to be that the younger generation is less religious, facing a tough economy, the high cost of weddings, and fears of joining finances with another.

Please allow this 60 year-old to add her two cents on this issue.

I believe waiting to get married or choosing not to marry are brilliant choices for all. The reasons we marry are fascinating to me. The timing of both of my marriages had something to do with my need for health insurance. I do not recommend that way of making decisions, although it can tend to be a major factor.

Mike and Laura standing 2005 smallThe most important part of the decision is why you want to get married. Religion, a tough economy, the high cost of weddings and fears of joining finances were not a part of my decision to marry my new husband Mike at age 50.

We had already worked out religious questions, our finances were good, our wedding costs were very low, and we had already joined our finances by the time we married.

I knew I had the kind of person I had been looking for my whole life. Unfortunately it took most of my life to find him and know what I had. Marriage was in the end a solid financial decision.

I had recently been through a long process of figuring out how I really felt about love and what that meant to me. In that process I decided that finding genuine love was my only goal at age 49. And if that was true I had to find a way to believe in love again.

Now I know believing in love is your first step towards finding true love. The next step is deciding love is your highest priority. What you focus on does grow! Marriage is not the issue.

Do the necessary work on yourself, trust your intuition and heart, and then love will take care of itself!