One baby boomer’s banana peel moments

We all have what baby boomer Katharine Giovanni has had: those “banana peel” moments that help shape our lives. But she seems to have had more than her share. So from Wake Forest, North Carolina, Katharine has produced a book that might give other boomers a few tools to get through those moments. Here’s an excerpt from “Rainbows and Banana Peels.”

My life has been a series of high peaks and extremely dark valleys. I have lived in heaven and have wallowed in hell.  Yet I am still here.

Katharine Giovanni

Katharine Giovanni

More to the point, my life has been a life of beautiful rainbows and extremely slippery banana peels.

I’ve often found myself in a field of banana peels. Now there’s a rough place to get out of. The minute you get back on your feet—WHAM! You slip on another peel and back down you go. The trick is to not let the circumstances that landed you in that darn field get into the core of your being.

The bad news is that the entrance to the field disappears the minute you walk in. You can’t go back. The good news is that the exit is on the other side of the field.

The key is to rise above it and keep your eye on the edge of the field because that’s the way out. On hands and knees . . . one step at a time . . . I’ve crawled my way out of the insanity of the banana peel fields.

banana_peel

NO ONE is the same person when they get out. You are different. Your life is different.

So you escape the field and are high on a rainbow for a while. How spectacular! Your life is going smoothly, you’re in a great relationship, you have money, life is good and then . . .

Wait for it . . .

WHAM.

Back down you go.

What happened?

Rainbows are slippery! It takes work to stay on top of them. Be careful because when you slide off the rainbow, banana peels instantly appear all around you, and you often don’t see them until you are flat on your back.  Again.

rainbow

I’ve been there and done that a bunch of times. So many times you would think that I am pretty good at staying out of them.

Wrong.

giovanni_bookLife has a way of hitting you from behind when you are not looking, and quite often it will knock you flat.The trick is to not stay there. You have to get up again. Don’t allow your circumstances to slip into your soul because, if you do, it’s really hard to get out of the banana peel field.

If you want to stay on the rainbow, then you have to believe that you CAN and think positively. Consistent negative thoughts such as “I’ll always be fat” or “I’ll never have enough money” will keep you in the banana peel fields.

At the end of the day, we come into this world alone and we leave alone, and along the way, we make decisions on how we want our life to play out. Some work, others don’t. Some raise us up on the rainbow, and others plunge us into the banana peel fields. The trick to life is to learn from your stay in the fields and try and stay on the rainbows for as long as possible.

Katharine Giovanni

Katharine Giovanni

That’s life, though, isn’t it? Life is filled with breathtaking rainbow moments and interminable journeys through the banana peel fields.

My biggest banana peel? Stage 3 breast cancer in 2012 at the age of fifty-one.

So how did I get through all these negative events in my life and still remain positive? Wasn’t always easy. Often it was a minute-by-minute choice.

Being positive is a lifestyle choice.

It’s a way of life that you choose.

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10 Comments

  1. Thanks for the advice! I hear you.
    you are right.. staying positive is the key. And as I get older, I have found that you can get through just about anything if you set your mind to it. Good friends and family can also help!
    My banana peel, prostate cancer at 49. Now a days, it seems like dealing with the cable company has been harder to deal with!

    1. So so sorry to hear about your cancer! But you are right … you can through things if you keep your mind going in the right direction. A great support team is also key. Wish I could help you with the cable company but that’s the one thing I can’t! LOL! Stay healthy my friend.

  2. Excellent article with much wisdom. I have always loved the Robert Frost quote that the “best exit is to go through.” I also believe in attitude, not aptitude. I read through some old family journal this past weekend, and there was an entry where my older daughter, Skyler, at age seven, came running down the stairs yelling, “Austen said a bad word! Austen said a bad word!” Austen, at age 5, had said, “I can’t.” I must have been trying to get them to say “I can, not I can’t!” So, tell yourself you can and walk right through those banana peels to the far side. Good luck!

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