“I doubt myself a lot but go forward at full throttle anyway.” Vanessa Kirby (BrainyQuote)
Red Table Talk is a Facebook show by Jada Pinkett Smith, the wife of the infamous Will Smith. I’ve followed her since she appeared on A Different World, a late 80’s sitcom about students attending a fictional historically black college and university. Since those days she’s gone on to have several movie and television roles. But her most recent credit is Red Table Talk with her mother Adrienne and daughter Willow, both fantastic women in their own right.
The concept is epic; most episodes include the three generations of women sitting at a red table, candidly tackling topics from drug addiction to sex to surviving loss. It was the surviving loss, May 14, 2018 episode that struck a chord for me. The last time I checked that episode had attained 1.8 million views and counting, so it struck a chord for others too.
What resonated for me was Jada’s transparency around the 16:03 marker with her producers and us, the viewing audience about the biggest loss she’d ever experienced. Here response was “herself,” the most significant loss she ever had was losing herself and how that realization was devastating. She had to figure out how to get herself back. She’s not alone.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary middle-aged is between 45 and 65 years old. The 2010 Census Briefs: Age and Sex Composition Issued on May 2011, there were 41.7 million middle-aged women. Jada quite possibly represents a large percentage of us. She mentions no regrets in putting her career on the hiatus as she focused on being a wife and mother.
No regrets but she lost herself in the midst of it all. I managed to continue to climb the professional ladder while raising my children but in full disclosure, the trek was slow and steady. No meteoric rise here because of post-work responsibilities; daycare pick-up, sporting practice, school plays, parent-teacher association meetings, etc.
I didn’t realize how lost I was until my children started driving, scheduling their events, and needing me less and less. I had more time to myself. Something I hadn’t experienced in more than a decade. What to do with all this time available. That’s when it occurred to me that I had put my life on the back burner. Like Jada, no regrets, just the reality.
The reality facilitated my shift from an empty nest to full throttle! I remarried after fifteen years of divorce. I started my business. I became ordained clergy in my Christian faith. I wrote an Amazon best-selling book, SHINE, and WIN: 5 Keys to Conquer the Fear of Failure. I became a John Maxwell Certified Coach, Speaker, Trainer, and Teacher. I started hosting my internet tv and radio Living Outside the Box Broadcast. I’m not only living outside the box but also no-holds-barred.
Jada’s story of finding herself and thriving with her successful Facebook show Red Table Talk. My story of finding myself and thriving. There may be forty million other middle-aged women whose stories are untold. I want those stories. Some women need to know they are not alone. Words of encouragement that life after the empty nest is not only possible but profitable; not just in a monetary sense.
In my KivoDaily, August 8, 2018 “Today I Choose Me Proclamations” article I announced my excitement about an upcoming book collaboration. I want your stories for the tentatively titled, “Today I Choose Me: Empty Nest to Full Throttle.” If you or someone you know are interested in sharing their story, email me, Lisa, at kickboxing believers dot com.
Census Bureau 2010 Census Results (link) https://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-03.pdf
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