I had lunch with a dear friend this week. We were catching up on each other’s lives, as we hadn’t seen each other in a couple years. Work, school, family, spouses, parents, LIFE. We were discussing how much had changed since we’d first met, and in the same right, how much could change if we sat down in the same spot a year from now. It’s kind of amazing, this winding road. Our planned paths, our diversions, our wrong turns, our familiar Sunday drives. The little backroad you ended up on serendipitously, that turned out to be the most unexpectedly beautiful ride of your life. All different chapters, different seasons. Different reasons. We were discussing how as life evolves, you can plan, but how it’s equally important to be open, and flexible to what life will unfailingly bring you. Often times, unexpectedly. I told her that the people I admire the most in life, are those who have reinvented themselves. Not because its chic. Not out of desperation. But instead, because of the awareness of the fleeting, transitional nature of life. Most of my idols at this point are in their 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s… who have become my friends and mentors. Not everyone. It’s definitely not an age thing. Someone can be as ignorant at 80 as they can be at 20. I seek out the people who have lived well. Who have been open. Who have tried. And failed. And gotten back up. Who are appreciative. Who don’t complain. Who can look at their regrets, their mistakes, and accept them, accept themselves, and make peace with themselves, with others. I strive to be that…now…when I’m a grandmother. This time of year can be tremendously sentimental, for the most joyous or painful of reasons. The “spirit,” I’m discovering (for myself, anyway) is in constantly trying to do good- by yourself, by others, by friends and strangers. I saw a beautiful quote a few weeks ago: “Everyone you know- wants to be happy, loves something, and has lost something.” Perhaps if we awaken with this thought each morning, we will all lead better lives. Because we are all in this together. For this winding road.