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Hollywood - Discusses Community, Inspiration and Aging





"Tell Your Story and Use Your Voice"


Hollywood Women Discuss Aging with Maria Shriver

  • Rita Wilson: American actress, singer, songwriter, producer, writer
  • Megan Mullaly: American actress, comedian, singer 
  • Maria Shriver: American journalist, Former First Lady of California, and founder of the nonprofit The Womens Alzheimer's Movement
  • Lisa Kudrow: American actress, writer, comedian, singer, producer
  • Tina Knowles Lawson: American business woman (owned salons), fashion designer, known for House of Dereon, and Miss Tina. Mother of Beyonce and Solange Knowles

Your Group


This week while dealing with a swollen knee from playing too much tennis, I had the time to listen and watch to a segment on the Today Show hosted by Maria Shriver on aging - Hollywood Women Discuss Aging with Maria Shriver.   Rita Wilson, Megan Mullally  Lisa Kudrow, and Tina Knowles Lawson were being interviewed on their thoughts of being a "certain age".  They discussed everything from having had kids or not, love, discrimination for being older, loving their lives, happy to be their age, careers, new careers, creativity, taking care of elders, and so much more.  The show was enlightening, interesting and inspirational.  However, what I really obtained from the hour plus piece was how important friendship and connection was to them.  They all were enjoying chatting over a spot of tea.  Their worries, concerns and voices were being heard by each other. Do you have Your Group?





Being Heard


In a nutshell, we all want to be heard.  What does this mean?  Well, you may have one opinion and another has a different opinion about an issue.  Everyone wants the opportunity to share opinions even if they are polar opposite.  They do not want to be scorned, laughed at or told that their thoughts are invalid or nonsense.  For instance, Shriver asked Mullally about why she made the choice to not have children and does she worry about who will take care of her when she is older?  Mullally answered that she never wanted to have children and that this decision works for her and her husband.  As for getting older and who will take care of her, she laughingly said "her friends".  Kudrow commented that we cannot expect anyone to take care of us and who knows what the future will bring.  As we all know, many have become caretakers for their parents which is challenging and difficult especially if you do not have the money or can find a place a decent place to care for them.  They were all grateful that they had the funds to assist their parents but were deeply concerned about the future of the aging.  The facilities available are very expensive and the care not always the best.  They all agreed that it is a challenge in our society that needs to be addressed.




Eunice Shriver: American philanthropist, Kennedy, Founder of Special Olympics

Speak Proudly, Walk Tall, Embrace Your Wrinkles, Keep on Reading



As for parents, Shriver, is very proud of her mother and her accomplishments.  She continually told her daughters that her mother, Eunice Shriver, had the most wrinkles that she had ever seen.   When Eunice walked into a room everyone stopped and listened.  She was the most interesting person in the room because of how she carried herself, presented herself and how she spoke in public.  I am sure being a Kennedy helped, yet remember Eunice founded the Special Olympics.  They all discussed how when one ages they become invisible.   Yet, if you keep on reading new books, newspapers keeps learning you will be center stage.  In other words, you can fill your face with filler, dress nicely but if you do not expand your brain and interests, you will be dull to yourself and others.  Embrace who you are and share your thoughts with pride.   Set a goal of reading something completely different or learning something unfamiliar or modern.



Love


Wilson was asked what it is like to married to such a famous actor? She always finds this question amusing and a bit irritating.  After all, she is an accomplished actress, musician, singer, writer, producer and mother.   Wilson replied that she doesn't see her husband this way because he is her companion, her husband, her support and her life partner. Love you husband, your family and friends.

And, if you do not have a significant other, put it out to the universe. Shriver asked, Tina Knowles Lawson, did she think she would ever find someone again after divorcing her husband and did she care if never remarried?  Lawson responded, never marrying or being without someone was not an option for her.  Shriver was taken aback by the comment "not an option".  Lawson knew what she wanted and put it out in the universe through prayer.   And, she found it.  She is now happily married to actor, Richard Lawson.   She takes care of herself, dresses well, wears makeup, is accomplished and was open to bringing someone into her life who fit her criteria.  The power of prayer combined with using your brain to change your life can make anything happen.  God did give us a brain to figure out what we need. My mother, god rest her soul, always said to me, "If you have a problem solve it.  God gave you a brain."  In other words, prayer and positive energy is very important.  One must also be open to trying new things and aware of the world on a daily basis.

Community - If you build it, if you create it, they will come! 


This segment solidified for me the entire reason for the interview - friendship and community.  Community is a huge problem in our society today.  Did you know that Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks, had a marketing strategy that emphasized people might desire three safe places in their lives.  First is home, second is work or a daily activity and third is a place to congregate.  Starbucks became and is the third place that integrates humanity.  Brilliant idea.  This is why at Starbucks you see many with laptops, or groups sitting around and chatting over coffee.  We all need a community, a safe place to speak your mind, be happy, to be heard, to listen to opposing opinions, celebrate life and build friendships.  Mullally started a group called, "Girlfriends Spectacular Night" where she brought women together from all ages to sit and chat about life.  The interviewees  felt that it was and is very hard to find a community to share yourself especially in big cities.   As I listened to this interview I personally realized that I do have this type of community at my tennis club.  We are of different ages and walks of life though we laugh a lot, share our stories, listen to others opinions and feel safe and loved.  We celebrate life.  In fact, one of my former corporate friends, visited us one day at the club for lunch.  When I walked my friend out of the club,  she said, "I get it now."  In other words, she knew I had a found my community
.  She had noticed that I had my community, my daily friendship piece fulfilled.  And, to this day, I keep coming back to be connected and have the bond of friendship. 

Where do you find a daily community?  Could it be sports, book club, work, a new career, mothers group etc.,  If you do not have one, put your thinking cap on and figure out what you like to do. Then, pick up the phone and make it happen.  Maybe it is a walking group, a book club or a standing lunch with different friends.  I also remember my corporate work days filled with the same components. We worked and played hard!  Take a stand, reach out and expand your world. 




Creativity & Follow Your Passion


Your mind is still vibrant and active.  In fact a women's brain in their 50's and actually grows because of the hormonal changes. Thus, we are essentially back in puberty ready to start new adventures or tackle fresh ideas.  Start now.  All of these women were firm believers in trying new things, charting new hobbies and relishing that you can still learn, still give and are viable.  You can change your narrative however you wish.  They didn't mention travelling, seeing the world, homes, clothes, jewels or money.  Rather they underscored being creative with a positive mindset.  Where are you heading?  Where are you going? What is your one passion?  Follow it.  You never know where it will lead.  Kudrow, after finishing the show Friends, knew she wanted to write and star in another show.  She pushed for it and the show, The Comeback, came into fruition.  Another example,  Knowles mentioned how she had hired a seamstress to fix Beyonce's, costumes for her.  The seamstress took it a step further and created a tailoring business.  In other words, you are not over, you can do more! Follow your passion.




Faith


It was obvious that all of them had faith in their lives.  This faith filled them with hope and kept them vibrant.  So, find your faith, whatever that maybe for you.   Your heart will be filled with hope and help you understand life. Wilson, commented when her mother was dying, she couldn't talk, eat and was on her death bed, she asked the priest, "Why does God allow this to happen to someone"?  He answered back, "Your mother is still teaching you."  You are all here for her right now.  I could personally relate to this comment since my mother passed away in April.  I kept thinking why was her life life so miserable and the end so ugly?  Now, I understand.  She was still teaching me at the very end.  I was there for her and so was my husband. I had stood by her all my life.  I could stand on my own was strong and would be okay.  And, when she was gone, she was free and I was free of worrying about her.  And, at my mothers small funeral, the rain was gently falling and children were in the distance laughing. The circle of life. Have faith.  


I have spotlighted only a few segments of this hour long discussion about women and aging.  It is a must watch or listen too while you are taking a break during your day.  If you are young, listen to this piece  too. It is profound and why not start now.  Believe, continue learning and fill your mind with positive possibilities.  Find your community, be heard, embrace your life, your age and look forward to each day.  Live wisely, live happily, enjoy your family, spouse, significant other and create your community.  Life is precious and so are you.

Thank you Maria for producing and creating this beautiful piece.  And, to the women participating. 


Link:  Hollywood Women Discussing Aging


"When the world is so complicated, the simple gift of friendship is within all of our hands."  Maria Shriver


Until Next Time! Be Kind. 

Kim






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