By Laura Drake
I’ve recently discovered that I’ve entered a new stage in my life. Yes, I’m retired, but I’ve been retired for three years now, and I still have the full time author gig. I think our move to Texas is what finished a transition that, I only see in retrospect, began a couple of years ago.
The move made me stand back and assess what was important – in belongings, surely, because this will be our last move. I didn’t want the kids to have to deal with more ‘stuff’ than they had to when we’re gone. I weeded out a ton of possessions, things I didn’t even remember I had. I feel much lighter, as if those things weighed me down in some way.
But there was another shift I’ve experienced that had nothing to do with a moving van. I’m now old. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not ready for the old folk’s home (though my husband would sometimes disagree). It’s almost like my brain has accepted my age.
And that’s not a bad thing.
I can no longer run like I used to, from task to task, having a day stuffed with things to do. I’m starting to accept that a nap at midday can be a nice thing. I’m finding that slowing down isn’t awful. When you slow a bit, you notice things more. Appreciate them more.
My friends were afraid that I’d hate living in the country, that I’d miss the coast and the bustle of LA. They said it so often, I started to worry. I’ve always been the restless type; always seeking the next thing, and running out to meet it.
Since our move, I’ve discovered something else new. I don’t need anything more than what I have right now. I’m truly content for the first time in my life: with my sweet ‘Red Door House’ and my quiet life, where nature is just a step out of the front door. We found a baby rabbit in our back yard the other day, I saw my first horned toad, and some friendly donkeys live on my walking path.
For once in my life, everything I have is enough. It’s worth getting old to have learned that.
Laura Drake is a city girl who never grew out of her tomboy ways, or a serious cowboy crush. She writes both Women’s Fiction and Romance.
She sold her Sweet on a Cowboy series, romances set in the world of professional bull riding, to Grand Central. The Sweet Spot (May 2013), Nothing Sweeter (Jan 2014) and Sweet on You (August 2014.) The Sweet Spot has recently been named a Romance Writers of America® RITA® Finalist in both the Contemporary and Best First Book categories.
Her ‘biker-chick’ novel, Her Road Home, sold to Harlequin’s Superromance line (August, 2013) which has expanded to three more stories set in the same small town.
This year Laura realized a lifelong dream of becoming a Texan and is currently working on her accent. She gave up the corporate CFO gig to write full time. She’s a wife, grandmother, and motorcycle chick in the remaining waking hours.