I met up with an old friend over a beer recently. We hadn’t seen each other in years. An aside: do you have friends where you can go years without contact, and just pick up the conversation as if those years hadn’t passed? That’s the case with this friend.
His story is remarkable. The love of his life passed away years ago. What followed were some dark months if not years. Any one of us would have felt the same.
Except he picked himself up, dusted himself off and took on the challenge of living a fulsome life again. Eventually, he met someone else. And they fell in love with each other. And with each other’s families, including children and grandchildren.
In parallel, my friend had the good fortune to join a really great software company. The company provided him with amazing success and growth opportunities over the years. Including a recent promotion and expat adventure.
Finding love again and prospering in his career while in his 50’s isn’t an accident in my opinion. It’s because he was open to the possibilities. It’s because he seized the possibilities. He made himself vulnerable, especially in falling in love with another person having lost his soulmate. He showed courage.
I think of his story and remind myself how our lives are made up of chapters. Adulthood isn’t one chapter. It can be many. And each chapter, if we choose to start it, can be a path to something new and valuable.
And if we follow the inspiration of people like my friend, those new chapters might never stop opening. All the way to the end of a life well lived.