As a “woman of a certain age,” stretching is quite important. We are at that stage in life where we wake up with twinges and occasional aches – and sometimes there is far more acute pain as the wear and tear on our amazing bodies begins to make itself known. By all means, check with a medical professional before starting anything intense, but Zumba, weight-lifting, and other forms of vigorous exercise are good for most of us, and we can ALL benefit from yoga, brisk walking, and simple stretching. (Start with a simple 5 minute routine, like this one.)

But that’s not really what I’m talking about today.

We need to stretch our minds and our spirits, as well as our bodies. So go try something new this week. Listen to a podcast on a topic you’ve never considered before – astronomy or the lemurs of Madagascar or the contents of a world-class museum might be a good place to start. Anything will do – just get out of your usual comfort zone. Maybe pick up a book about an incredible story that you’ve never heard of before. Or fiction in a genre you usually breeze right by. Ever played pickleball? Me, neither – but I’m willing to try! If you enjoy cooking, try something you’ve never considered before – maybe bao buns or Irish soda bread. Get a few friends and go visit your County art museum. Sit in on a bluegrass picking session. Take a samba lesson.

For me, my big stretch recently came this past week, as I taught my first art class. I don’t mind telling you that I was nervous about it – my old self would have said, “Who do you think you are? You’re just a hobbyist!” But everyone seemed to have quite a good time – including me! Look at those gorgeous, joyful jellyfish!

And I’m about to leave on vacation, where several new experiences await – including a ceramics class and camping! I don’t know how it’ll all work out, but I know I’m excited about the prospect!

If you don’t try anything new, you’ll never move beyond where you are right this very second. And we’ve got a lot of life to live, so isn’t it a good idea to move forward with ourselves?

Scatter joy, Divas!





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