Roughly every seven years, I have experienced significant personal upheavals that question how I see the world, how I operate in relation to it and that drives for massive changes in how I function.
The mid 40s have ratcheted up the awareness that comes with that process. In consequence, I am finding myself restless, possibly for the first time in life. Placid suited me fine. After struggling to label the emotion as restlessness, I am now accepting that there is a lesson here to be learnt. This, then, is the messy middle.
This change in website, the blog and other writing is partly in response to that existential fitfulness. I am finding comfort in the company of fellow travellers of the edgy, late 40s, early 50s ilk, who have all taken unorthodox and thorny deviations off the path.
In India, the Gen X experience is knowing lives pre and post liberalisation, pre and post internet, pre and post “family over all else”. We have had to embrace the grey spaces 20 years ahead of our parents generation and are in turn seeing our children’s generation embrace it a further 20 years ahead of “schedule”. My generation is the vanguard for sense making the topsy turvy in real time and rolling with the punches. This is peacetime often masquerading as a war zone (or vice versa). We are the first generation that has experienced the forced sedentary and have in droves embraced endurance sports, massive lifestyle changes and reforged a good relationship with good health and strength. For a product of this generation and all this churn, it’s normal that I want to make sense of yet another big life change.
Another dawning realisation is that I am amid Brené Brown calls the unravelling. Boy, am I excited! All the work we’ve done comes to the aid of all the work we need to do. The effort over the past three years in making space for helplessness, despair even, means that I am able to see the cognitive dissonance in the eye and commit to the big work on hand.
My hope for sharing this process is to shine a light so out there in the inky blackness, others realise that they aren’t alone. I also hope to share resources to help navigate the times calmly.
Finally, what’s with the almost unrecognisable picture, you ask? Sometimes, I need a reminder of how fire cracking fierce I was, to help me navigate these territories. A quick memo that still waters, run deep etc.