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changing the face of aging
Susan Brooks
See you at the movies!

See you at the movies!
March 2023

Hi There!

I love the movies, always have, always will. Oscar Night is March 12 and watching this every year is like having another birthday: The fashions! The colors and themes! The speeches, their words and stories! who's with who on the red carpet, who looks fabulous! and who's not there...

Perhaps you already know about this other Awards Show, but this was my first time watching and experiencing The Movies for Grown-ups Awards, so very different than the Academy Awards.

At the Movies for Grown Ups Awards show every presenter and award-winner was fully dressed and lovely. No half-naked costumed female who consumes center stage and, hopefully, remembers her lines. This was a grown-up cast telling growing up stories:

Then, there's Jamie Lee Curtis, winner of Career Achievement Award and up for Best Actress on Oscar night! "I like being a grown-up. We know who we are...and we're here for more than Instagram likes. A grown-up has a responsibility for her achievement. We want to make the world better...that's what flips my grown-up switch!"

Movies for Grown Ups celebrates experience. They recognize those films that take on profound issues, like Good Luck to You Leo Grande with Emma Thompson realizing how her body is changing and her sexless life can still be changed, to Cate Blanchett as the star in T&qqcute;r. And Judith Ivey, the sage in this community, awarded Best Supporting Actress in Women Talking, says she is "happy to stand up to the abuse of power presented in this film."

On this Movie for Grown Ups Awards Night there are many film or TV programs I never heard of but now must see: Blackbird, Abbott Elementary, The Old Man, Living, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris...She Said, with the actual journalists who took on Harvey Weinstein, and for Best Picture, Everything Everywhere All at Once told the grown up story of a housewife in multi-dimensions, and Women Talking and on and on. A highlight for me was the glamorous dress worn by Patricia Clarkson. She looked fabulous!

Thank you AARP for shining a light on Aging! Let's see how Oscar delivers on March 12! See you at the movies!!!

Talk to me.

Fatima Halim Age 75

Featured Modern Elder*

Fatima Halim Age 75

Wherever Fatimah goes, she takes her roots with her.

Born in Harlem into a colorful and creatively talented family of writers, musicians, and storytellers, Fatimah's blood is thick.

Fatimah's home offers an understanding of who this lady really is. Every corner, every door, every inch of every wall is art and has a story to tell, a question to ask or provoke. Photos peek out to be seen: pictures of her ancestors next to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, artwork of paintings and sculptures and stained glass treasures that artists have gifted her or that she's created herself. There's a treasure trove of stories and memories to explore and discover…all so Fatimah!

We talked as we meandered around this living art show, with Fatimah showing me the way. When I asked her what has been the most instrumental influence in shaping her life, she almost answered too quickly. "Slavery," she said firmly. "The effect of slavery still has a profound impact on how America interfaces with my people." Whether it's through her beloved Rites of Passage programs for young girls and young men of color…or her Journey Home program for incarcerated women, Fatimah's intent is to develop women and men who lead with their highest and best self. "My life's purpose is to affect change, and the way I do that is ‘downloading'. I've had, and am still having, a full and divine life. And I understand the power and the importance of passing down the knowledge of our history and our culture."

Outside in her garden and firepit, chairs are set up in groupings that invite connection. Her home is a sanctuary for her and so many others: "My home is a sacred space. I can only pray that those who enter will feel peace."

Fatimah is filled with gratitude. "I am loved, and I'm thankful for that. I am also thankful for the myriad of experiences that construct my narrative. Aging is empowering and I'm humbled that I have a family/community with which to share my wisdom."

*Chip Conley, best-selling author and speaker, hospitality entrepreneur and leading thought leader, created The Modern Elder Academy's mission "to inspire the ability to reframe a lifetime of experience and recognize one's mastery, relevance, and value in the modern workplace." The Modern Elder* is Conley's term and effort that "liberates and inspires us to embrace wisdom as a path of growing whole, not old...The Modern Elder*marries wisdom and curiosity."

Every month this newsletter will Feature the stories and wisdom of Modern Elders*.

Share your Modern Elders* with us...maybe it's you!! Please send in your Modern Elder* Story along with a one-line Wisdom statement plus photo to be featured. CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT

Susan Brooks

Today, I am 76 years old, and proud of it! Paul Simon, who is now in his 80's said it best years ago: us boomers were BORN AT THE RIGHT TIME!

Yes, I was born at the right time! I'm still a hippie from the 60's, I marched for civil rights for all humans, equal rights for women, waving my bra with the best. I am proud to be living and growing in a robust marriage of 55 years. I survived motherhood, and so did my now-adult children. I was an award-winning woman business owner when there were but a few of us. I've learned a whole bunch of lessons, and more importantly, I've earned my fair share of Wisdom, too. I am Pro-Age!

According to Chip Conley, one of today's leading thought leaders: "Experience is making a comeback. Wisdom never grows old." Chip created the hallmarks of the Modern Elder*: "learning to marry wisdom and experience with curiosity, cultivating a beginner's mind so that learning never ends, exemplifying a willingness to evolve both as a student and sage." Research shows that shifting our mindset about Aging can add 7.4 happy years to a person's life.

Proud to say I am a graduate of the Modern Elder Academy as well as an active participant in Wise Aging: Living with Joy, Resilience, and Spirit programs. As one of the creators and hosts of the Thrive@55 event, we celebrated our female community leaders who were 55+.

As long as I'm able to see the sunrise every morning and keep a curious mind, there's more living to do, so much more to learn, and so many new ways to serve. Trailblazer that I am, and always will be, I recognize my next mission: by example and demonstration I am committed to Changing the Face of Aging: One Modern Elder* at a time!

I welcome both local and national speaking engagements as well as one-on-one coaching opportunities to delve more deeply into navigating life transitions. Email me Here.

Juicy ways and energizing action steps: how to soak in the wisdom and energy of becoming your own Modern Elder*
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