Is there a new wave coming? A wave of women in midlife and beyond ditching their traditional security trappings for a nomadic, adventure-ready lifestyle?
Am I seeing the beginnings of an awakening?
Yes, warily I think of the adage: “We all see what we want to see.” As many of you know,I took a month in Vietnam earlier this year specifically with a group of digital nomads. But in a group composed mostly of 20- and 30-somethings, with a dash of early 40s for extra flavor, at second-half-of-50s I was definitely an Elder Outlier. So what makes me think that there’s something changing in the air today?
Women Embracing Nomadic Lifestyle:
“It feels like a movement, a quiet revolution, and I’m all ears.”
Fast forward eight months and my conversations with women — in person and via social media feed — are ablaze with the over-50 crowd embracing this nomadic lifestyle. It feels like a movement, a quiet revolution, and I’m all ears.
Within our Kuel Life Thought Leader community, I’ve witnessed it firsthand. Amy Palmer, our intrepid BluePrint Breaker, writes her wisdom from wherever the wind takes her. No permanent address, just a whole lot of perspective. And as I type these words, I’m virtually bidding adieu to our Gratitude Thought Leader, Lori Saitz, who’s trading in the familiar for the unknown.
But the intrigue doesn’t end there. This morning brought news of a couple of other women, acquaintances of mine, embarking on their own nomadic journeys. It’s like the universe whispered in their ears, urging them to explore, to break free from the confines of routine. What’s behind this surge? Is this the new zeitgeist for us women in our second act?
Ready For Our Turn:
We’ve done the heavy lifting. Raised our children (if we chose to have them), nurtured relationships, and for some, even untangled ourselves from marriages that no longer served us. We’ve unearthed the truth: We’re not here to play caretaker to grown-up partners. It’s a revelation that becomes crystal clear once the last fledgling has left the nest. And in our spare moments, we’ve built empires, dabbled in side hustles, and embraced entrepreneurship. The pandemic may have thrown a curveball, but it also showed us that our impact transcends borders. We can create, inspire, and lead from anywhere on this glorious planet. And I do mean anywhere.
As someone who has prioritized travel her whole life, I grapple with my envy. The romantic allure of floating through the world, untethered by those early-life coveted trappings; the house, the car, the kids, the piles of Tupperware are pulling on my soul. Why do we need so much Tupperware?
Can We Have It All?
“Can I have the stability of a rooted relationship and the untamed spirit of a wanderer?”
Yet, here I am, caught in my own self-imposed conundrum. I’ve chosen partnership, a conscious decision to share this wild ride with someone by my side. And my chosen partner for varied and sundry reasons does not accompany me always on my adventures. The question that echoes in my mind is one that many of us grapple with: how to strike that harmonious balance? Can I have the stability of a rooted relationship and the untamed spirit of a wanderer?
I think one of the beautiful gifts women have been given at this point in history is an awakening to the idea that we don’t have to fit a particular societal mold. So many of us, me included, began our journey with a checklist, physical or not, of what we needed to accomplish and/or have to view ourselves as successful women. It feels like now we are able to re-decide and if we are lucky we have our health and financial means to make those decisions.
And then, there’s the matter of Tupperware. Why, oh why, do we amass mountains of it? It’s like a silent army in our cupboards, a testament to our practicality and our tendency to over-prepare. Perhaps, amidst this newfound freedom, it’s time to reassess my Tupperware collection. A symbolic shedding of the old for the promise of the unknown.