Self-Discovery at Midlife - What Have You Learned About Yourself? - Elegantly Dressed and Stylish -Fashion Over 50
post-template-default,single,single-post,postid-25562,single-format-standard,bridge-core-3.0.1,qode-page-transition-enabled,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode_grid_1300,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,qode-theme-ver-28.7,qode-theme-bridge,qode_header_in_grid,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-6.8.0,vc_responsive

Self-Discovery at Midlife – What Have You Learned About Yourself?


Happy Friday ladies!

It’s funny how i come up with some of my blog topics. A thought may strike me early in the morning, or before bed. I have a journal right by my bed and I will write down an idea or topic. What made me think of this subject was just my own introspection of jobs i have worked and just me being in a place where I enjoy doing what i am doing. I also think about what has changed in my life, and how I have handled that change.

What I have Learned

Do you often look inward? What have you learned about yourself at midlife?  Sometimes I think had I not had Ehlers- Danlos Syndrome, I would not necessarily know how strong of a person I am . I know you often hear this from people. The struggles and hardships that people encounter, can often make them a stronger person. What does that mean?

For me, it means that I can choose a positive attitude no matter what the problem. If i had “given in” or given up to the illness, I probably would be laying in bed each day. 10 years ago, when I first was diagnosed, I could take my puppies down the street to the end of the sidewalk for a walk to do their business. I would come back and lay on the couch and watch tv. I was in so much pain, that I didn’t know what to do. My pups were my saving grace, something I could wake up and be happy about.

Prior to EDS, I had Pudendal Neuralgia,. for years, a condition which causes pain from the pudendal nerve ( in the pelvic floor) .The pain was a burning,  and would radiate from there and I would be unable to sit for long. For years, I had pelvic floor therapy to relieve the pain. All of this was done with me, as sick as I was, researching and reading what the problem may be. I wrote about Being Proactive with Your Health, as it puts you in charge, and gives you a bit more control over the situation. At least a feeling of control.

Positive Outlook

All of this, over 10 years, has given me confidence in myself to know I can get better, and choose a more positive outlook in life. I can persevere and know that things will improve. That one day doesn’t have to be like the next.  After all of this time, sometimes I forget just how much pain I was in, or how difficult it was. I had strength that I didn’t even know I had. I didn’t give up. I didn’t think there was a choice – so i did what I could each day and made the best out of better days. I always used to think I didn’t have patience, but I must if i was able to take the steps necessary to gradually get better.

My experience also gives me compassion for other people who are going through an “invisible illness” which most are. Not judging.

I’ve learned that self-love is important, family is important, and my opinion of myself is really the only one that matters.

On the last note, I have also learned that creativity is something that runs through my veins. It is a natural part of fmy  being. I have always loved creating whether it is through music, stories, writing or fashion, it is something that makes me heart beat a bit faster. The diversion that was “Elegantly Dressed and Stylish” became something that I would enjoy and be proud of.

What about you? What have you learned or discovered about yourself at midlife?

Have a wonderful weekend?

Jess xo




  • elle the Elle Diaries
    Posted at 11:48h, 01 October Reply

    Beautiful image of you Jess, so furry and elegant. Yes I very much relate to your blog topic. I do agree an illness, or another struggle, like the loss of a loved one, can makes us more empathic to others. You have a wonderful attitude! Mid life builds character and self awareness!
    xoxo, Elle

    • Jess Jannenga
      Posted at 11:51h, 01 October Reply

      Thank you Elle! I think it is my puppy, Gibson, that makes me look good 🙂 I appreciate your thoughts. Yes, I have learned more about myself, and how I handle challenges, gaining strength from this situation, as I am sure you know. So true about midlife! Happy Monday friend! xx

  • Emma Peach
    Posted at 10:25h, 26 September Reply

    I’m glad to see your blog is back up and running! A positive attitude makes all the difference – whenever I start to think negatively I stop myself and turn it around, otherwise it can lead to a downward spiral. Growing older is very liberating, I care less about what other people think of me now, whereas in my teens and 20s it held me back. You gain perspective in midlife I think, and that allows you to be bolder and more focused on what you really want.

    Emma xxx

    • Jess Jannenga
      Posted at 13:47h, 26 September Reply

      Hi Emma, thank you for your insightful comment. And thanks for the encouragement, as I was going a bit berserk with the blog and technology! Yes, attitude helps you through life, and it is always good to be “aware” of your feelings, state of mind etc. I was the same in my younger days, very insecure about myself and it did affect how others saw me too. I am with you, there is a sense of freedom in midlife!

Post A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.