My 58th birthday is in about two weeks and it is time for my annual soul-searching. Seems like starting about a month before my birthday, I start delving into my psyche trying to figure out the W’s of my life:

  • who am I
  • what I want to do with my life
  • where I want to live
  • what I want to live in

This has been going on for about 16 years now … ever since I got divorced. Usually, I spend time off and on during the month prior just taking stock, and generally coming to the conclusion that where I was at that point in my life was “okay” or “good enough.”

This year seems to be a bit different. This year seems harder. This year seems … well, this year it seems that finding answers are so much more necessary. There seems to be an urgency this year. There are times that I can actually feel my soul reaching up and tugging on my brain saying, “I need feeding!!”

So, what types of things feed my soul? Music, for one. Music has been a big part of my life since I was a kid. Everything from piano lessons to singing to being in the school band, etc. I’ve had a piano of my own – consistently – since I was 18 years old.  Unfortunately, several years ago, I was in a very bad financial place and had to sell everything of value that I owned. That included a much loved electronic keyboard that I had since the late ’90s. Since then, I haven’t lived anywhere that had room for one or that I was allowed to have one. Although my skills have faded, I still miss it very much.

Another meal my soul can truly feast on is solitude, preferably near a body of water (sans mosquitoes, naturally). It allows my brain to swirl and toss out all the clutter so I can think, contemplate, sort and cogitate on all manner of things. It’s also when I take some of my best photos. Solitude is very, VERY hard to come by living and working where I do.

Love and romance — there’s another thing that truly feeds my soul. I’ve had two loves in my life so far. Sadly, neither were meant to be life-long, but I still have faith. I do believe I’ll find a great man that has all the qualities I’m looking for and we’ll grow old together.

Photography, writing, reading, music, solitude, love (not necessarily in that order) … those are the things that feed my soul. Those are the things that are scarce in my life. Those are the things that my life needs to revolve around.

I don’t know if it’s the way I was raised or just my personality type, but I have continued to work in jobs I don’t like just for the financial security. I can’t seem to find the strength to change the things I want and need to change. I can’t seem to let myself go so I can feed my soul properly. Every part of my life needs to change if I’m going to be able to live the rest of it without regret. And I’m deathly afraid of that.

I have to find a way to push through that fear. I have to find a way to take a leap of faith. I have to feed my soul so that the mere thought of not doing so no longer brings me to tears.