Does Your Age Keep You From Pursuing a Dream?

Giant numbers







Article by Wendy McCance

Have you ever had a moment when you see the big picture in an unusual way?Something was said or you saw something that made it all clear?

I was working all morning and around noon took a break.  I was watching an old video on YouTube that was originally aired on VH1.  At the bottom of the video, there was news going across the screen of a well-known musician that had died at 44.  This was an old video, and I heard this news years ago, but suddenly I saw things in a whole new way.

It was just a few years ago when I was 44.  It was around that time that I decided to become a writer. What has followed since I made that decision has been remarkable.  I was so thrown when it occurred to me that if I had somehow died just a few years back, I  never would have experienced the best times I’ve ever had.  Once I became a full-time writer, there have been so many amazing moments that my world has changed completely.

I remember being in my mid 20’s and debating going back to school.  I felt too old and when figuring out the years it would take to finish a degree while working full-time, it seemed like it would take much too long.  Back then I thought that by the time I finished, I wouldn’t have enough years left working in the field for it to be worthwhile. This in my 20″s?  I can’t believe that’s what I thought back then.

I have heard the saying, “it’s never too late.”  It’s sad, but I wasted a lot of my longer years being paralyzed with the fear that I was just too old to start over.  I can’t imagine how my life would have turned out if I had been as brave and determined as I found myself to be when I began my writing career.

With writing, I remember thinking that I may as well go after what I was passionate about because I had nothing to lose.  When I began writing, I had already had so many dark experiences that I was willing to try anything to get a small piece of light shining back into my life.  It was by far the best decision I ever made.

Lately, I have been looking for a creative outlet for my writing.  I was looking for something as different from what I do each day as possible.  More importantly, I wanted to collaborate with some other people.  Writing can be lonely and although I can tolerate being alone much longer than many people I know, it has finally worn on me too.

I began to go down the, “you are too old” path when I was making decisions about what was next.  I do have times when I mourn my age and wish I could take my knowledge and go back in time.  Since that is impossible, I try to block out the whole age game and go after what sounds good.

I used to think my next creative project would be to write a book.  It occurred to me that I spend so much time already doing solitary writing that I would be happier to find something that would thrust me into a position where I would be working around other creative types.

I began to test out the idea of writing songs by doing some writing, and found that I loved it.  The melody pops into my head as I am writing and the stuff I write has been pretty good.  Now I am going to start taking guitar lessons so that I can understand music on a deeper level and will be able to read the notes.  I’ve even begun to look around for local musicians that might be able to give me some advice or throw me in the direction of someone I can work with.

This is going to be great fun and a hobby that maybe someday can turn into something more serious.  We’ll see.  I feel lucky to have a writing career and some terrific clients. Now I will also have an enjoyable hobby to pursue during free moments.

So I wonder, what about you?  Has age held you back from going after something you really cared about?  Do you feel silly mentioning that you would like to do something that seems better suited towards younger people?  Honestly, I feel a little silly mentioning getting into music.  It feels like too little much too late.  Even so, I know I will enjoy it and have some great experiences so I’m not going to let age stand in the way.

photo by: Valerie Everett

Wendy McCance

Wendy McCance is a Michigan based freelance writer and social media consultant. Wendy has gained attention as the founder of the popular blog Searching for the Happiness which can be viewed in 9 local papers online, including the Oakland Press. The combination of writing skills and social media knowledge is what makes Wendy such a powerhouse to work with. Stay tuned for opportunities to advertise, guest post and as always, have your questions answered.

To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: [email protected]

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21 thoughts on “Does Your Age Keep You From Pursuing a Dream?

  1. An inspiring tale, Wendy.

    In October 2013, at the age of 55, I opted for early retirement after 33 years working in the UK’s psychiatric services. I am now in the privileged position of being able to devote much more time to my blog, humor writing and my book (providing an insider critique of western psychiatry). I feel I’ve a lot to offer and, despite my age, I remain hopeful that I can be productive. As someone who is clearly talented, and more than a decade my junior, I’m sure you will flourish in whatever you choose to pursue.

    Thanks for the energizing article.

    • Hi Bryan, thanks so much for sharing your story. It sounds like you are doing great! I’m so glad age isn’t standing in your way. I appreciate the kind words, and by the way, I’ll be 47 this year myself. Not so very young either and it’s only been a few years since I found what I love to do. It’s wonderful that age truly doesn’t need to be a factor, just go out there and live your dreams. 🙂

  2. Thanks for the great piece, Wendy. It truly was inspiring. My situation is a little bit different…I’m 56 years old with almost 35 years in the communications profession. I lost my job in September and haven’t been able to find a new position.The #1 barrier: age. Most of the SENIOR Manager positions out there are only seeking people with 10 years experience or less. I say this to make a point that in my personal life, age is not a barrier. I do things and live the life of a 20 year old, but in my professional life I’m constantly reminded that most employers consider candidates my age yesterday’s news.

    Thanks again!

    • I wish everyone could just strike out on their own and create their own jobs. It’s horrible to hear when people who are perfectly capable to do a job get passed up for the most unfair reasons. I am so sorry that you have been experiencing this. I wish you all the best and have my fingers crossed that good news will come your way.

  3. Congratulations and best wishes, Wendy on pursuing your new dream. I admire your courage and that of your readers (based on their comments) to start a new career, not letting their age or fears stop them. I can totally relate to all that you shared and hope that I will continue my dream to be a writer. I have already talked myself out of applying for law school and going back to school to become an addictions counselor (specifically for compulsive gambling), but just maybe I can still pursue one last dream!

  4. Gotta add one more link -*- to prompt & support that music Spirit*: ‘Be Instrumental’ -*- Blog Article

    The included brief excerpts/passages from my book are based on my interaction with a friend who expanded her music immersion later in life.

    Regardless of what instrument(s) you choose, Be ‘Instrumental’ in Your Own Life -*- for Life -*- as ‘WELL’.

  5. My answer to your question is simple. It a huge resounding NO !!!!

    After years of attempting to write an adult Contemporary romance, I finally took someone’s advice toward the end of 2011 and wrote something for a younger audience. What I wrote is my first YA Paranormal/Time Travel/First Kiss romance novel entitled “I Kissed a Ghost.”

    After releasing the paperback edition on December 20, 2012, I began to write Flash Fictions in response to prompt words given by Lillie McFerrin on her website. In 2013 I returned to writing the Contemporary I’d never finished, which is now entitled “His Darkest Secret.” Today I can finally see the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel, and I can type that elusive final period of this manuscript.

    Things change, and right now I’m almost finished compiling an anthology of 100 Flash Fictions. I’ve got one of these Flash Fiction included in a Literary Review e-zine which should be released shortly. And about seven of them, with a little tweaking, are to published in a fund raising anthology which has HIV/AIDS as one of its themes.

    This year I began to write what has become a YA Urban Fantasy entitled “The Secret of the Well” which will also be a sequel to “I Kissed a Ghost.”

    Who would have thought that at the age of 63, I’d have self-published one YA romance novel, an anthology on the verge of being self-published, with two more on the way. Who would have thought that I’d be seeing something I’ve written published elsewhere.

    So given the above, and as I wrote at the beginning of this, age DOES NOT keep a person from pursuing their dream.

    PS - I got surprise this week when I check Amazon for my YA Paranormal romance. I’d received two 4 STAR reviews. But what amazed me this most is one had been written by a MALE.

    • Your story is so inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I love that you mentioned your age. You really are never too old to do anything you set your mind to and your story is proof that you should live a full life at every age no matter what.

      • You’re quite welcomed Wendy.

        And THANKS for your wonderful, sweet compliment.

        Now if people would only start buy copies of my book, I’d be a REALLY HAPPY CAMPER 🙂 🙂 🙂

        Besides I never said “I’M OLD” 😀 😀 😀

        • Oh, I know you aren’t “old.” Old are people who have lost their curiosity and fearlessness. Robin, I’d love if you wrote back with a link for your book. Maybe we can get some more attention for it. 🙂

  6. Your path seems to be paralleling where I have traveled. I transitioned to compose my first complete song a few months ago at age 60; and I first sang and played solo on several instruments -*- in public … within the past 3 weeks.
    Keep the Music Alive -*- Continue to Grow (Life-Love-Music-Spirit) -*- Through Life -*-

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