We’ve all heard statistics: 1 in 5 people will…1 in 4 people won’t…20% of women will never…50% of couples will…and on and on the stats go. But, have you ever noticed that the focus is always on the side of the bad news? In fact, I’m guilty of providing bad news statistics, as noted in my article titled Why Agents Reject 96% of Author Submissions. If that’s not on the list of depressing statistics, I can’t image what would be.
But, I have good news for the women out there who have heard statistics that women who have never married by the age of 50 have a very slight chance of their happily ever after. I’m proof that not only can you find great love at 50, and be married in your early fifties, but that it can be well worth the wait. My reasons for not marrying up till now are many, but that’s not what this is about. What it is about is knowing and experiencing amazing love later in life after not settling for anything less earlier in life. I spent my earlier years traveling. I’ve driven cross country ten times, have lived in Connecticut, Florida, Virginia, California, and Colorado. I’ve been an office manager, a legal secretary, a high school English teacher, and — for the past fifteen years — a ghostwriter and publisher. The only pitter-patter on my floors were the four-legged puppy kind. My wanderlust life meant that suburbia and city-life were foreign, unrelatable places to me. I lived in a world of exploration — hiking and biking mountain trails, photographing oceans, and relocating on a whim.
Not long after my tenth cross-country drive back to Charlottesville, Virginia (all of my roads eventually lead back to Charlottesville), my yellow lab, Stephan, passed away, leaving me with his sister, Julie, and a devastated, broken heart. I was mentally and physically exhausted from a year of rebounding from issues related to my congenital heart defect (which meant a near-death experience and my third open heart surgery, but that’s told in Not My Day to Die), from yet another move, and from losing my beloved yellow lab. At that point I decided life doesn’t apologize, and all we can do is keep moving on.
Two months later, while sitting in C’ville Coffee, a tall, dark and very handsome man walked in and turned my world right-side up. We talked for nearly two hours before he needed to go to a meeting, but not before I invited him to the University of Virginia vs. Notre Dame football game two weeks later. We met for a hike and lunch in the time before the football game. From those days three years ago, my life — now our life — has never been the same as it was, and I mean that in the best way possible. We bought an RV (see Living Life Untethered) and will go fulltime in a few years. We adopted a black lab pup, Lucy, after Julie passed away. Lucy keeps his thirteen-year-old black lab, Sox, young. He proposed to me at sunrise on a rocky beach in Biddeford, Maine two days before my birthday while we were on an RV trip in New England to fulfill my goal of photographing all of the east coast lighthouses. Now we are planning our 2019 wedding — a beach wedding in Palm Beach, Florida.
Sometimes God saves your best days for later in life when you are certain to appreciate them after all of the hard knocks He put you through leading up to them. My wanderlust days of traveling the country, ghostwriting books for clients, and photographing nature, are days I will always cherish. I don’t regret not settling down back then one bit. It’s what made my life unique. But now, in my early fifties, I’m marrying the love of my life and together we will travel the country in our RV with our black labs photographing lighthouses, sunrises, and sunsets along the way. I’ll be writing many more books, both of my own and for clients, but now I’ll be doing it with a partner by my side. Although life doesn’t apologize, it does have a way of turning right side up when you least expect it.