Jane Fonda talked on Oprah the other day about her life so far, a book she had just published called My Life So Far, and about what it’s like for her to be in the third and final act of her life. The first act is up to the age of thirty. From thirty to sixty is the second – that’s the hard one. It’s also where you build your life in a material sense. From sixty to the end – that’s it folks. The third act is challenging, because you really know your mortality. But it’s also the time when you know who you are, better than ever before. Especially if you’ve taken the time to pay attention and to try to understand, make sense of, where you’ve come from.
Things fall into place in many ways towards the end of the second act. Jane said something that really brought a smile to my whole being – “it’s gets better”! Halleluja! But of course it must, because you’ve come a long way, and now you have wisdom, you know how to put your boundaries down, you don’t take shit from anybody – actually that one was Oprah’s. She was very funny when she said it, but she was dead serious. There’s such freedom in that, oh good god. I can’t quite say that I don’t take shit from anybody, but I sure take a lot less than I used to, and it gets better by the day.
Jane was fabulous to watch and it was obvious that the “better” she spoke of was real for her. She’s really in her power, and relaxed in her own space. As Oprah is. Jane is 72, and looks as if she’s a young and healthy 50. That’s because she is young and healthy, both of body and mind, in the sense that counts the most. She has a wonderful sense of humor and has reach a place of clarity within herself that’s truly inspiring. I think it’s amazing that I live in this era where women have reached such focus and self-awareness, and can truly enjoy life at so many different levels. They point the way for me.
I’m coming to the end of my second act, and wrestle with the reality that it was consumed with just trying to find my way back home to me. Hard as I tried, I wasn’t able to build what I longed to. It’s been pretty frustrating. Now those years are gone, but the wonderful thing is that I understand what that coming home to me was about. I know so much more about who I am now, where I’ve come from and where I’m going, it doesn’t matter what my age is. I can still use the remaining years of my second act and all of my third to build.
Jane has a website at janefonda.com I left a comment there today on her blog. It was nice to be able to do that. She replies, also. She made a big impact on me, I’m grateful for how she’s shared her insights and experiences and for how she’s reached this place of being in her power. I’m getting a lot out of Oprah in this final season of hers. She’s so different – as if she’s quieter within herself, more relaxed, more at ease. She’s beautiful. I’m glad we’re only seeing the last season now in South Africa; if we’d had it last year I would have missed it. I love it when the whole damn universe conspires to give me what I need.