Pushing the boundaries of blooming late

Wunderkind I was not. (Per Merriam-Webster, wunderkind is someone “who succeeds in a competitive or highly difficult field or profession at an early age”; the reference is from the New York Times article that inspired this post, “Finding Success, Well Past the Age of Wunderkind.”) What aspirations to greatness I did have in my early twenties evidently were stymied by demons I didn’t even know I had. Still, I’ve done okay, even if the road has been bumpy and circuitous.

That is why I so related to these stories of people coming into their professional own later in life—native New Yorker Lucille Shulklapper (writer), Ernestine Shepherd (bodybuilder, marathon runner), Marjorie Forbes (oboist), Paul Tasner (entrepreneur), and others you can read about in the article.

We usually associate the term “late bloomer” with children, adolescents, even adults whose talents manifest in their 20s or 30s. It’s usually not a term we associate with those over age 50, but it is more common than you may think. Article author Abby Ellin talks about people “blooming in areas they never expected” and “discovering that the latter part of their lives can be just as (or even more) rewarding creatively, emotionally and spiritually.” I recommend reading the article—it’s a day brightener!