Retiring in Mazatlán, Mexico – As a retiree, I’ve come to realize the importance of acknowledging and congratulating myself for the decisions that have brought me happiness, good fortune, transformative experiences, and valuable skills. There are certainly regrets, but I take pride in the person I’ve become. Looking back, I wouldn’t trade having kids for anything. The love I have for my children is unparalleled, and I consider myself lucky to watch them develop into wonderful people with their own lives.
In my 20s and 30s, there are three things I’m so glad I did. First, I avoided the stereotypical American body shame and rejoiced in my body. I also learned how to cook and bake from scratch, thanks to the teachings of my mother, and I have never regretted it. My culinary skills have opened up a whole world of possibilities and experiences. Lastly, I embraced love for myself without judgment and gave myself permission to experience life to the fullest. I believe it’s important for young people to do the same and to be gentle with themselves because we’re all just doing our best, and that is its own success.