Stories about people included in 30-over-30 lists
January 2, 2023 11:32 AM   Subscribe

Please throw some recommendations of stories you've enjoyed that are centered around characters that started pursuing their goals later in life.

Hi all and happy 2023!
The new year has started and I'm looking for some inspiration.
I am 30-something years old and actively working on improving my mental health. The past few years I have gotten a couple of official diagnoses that have been both hard to accept but simultaneously very liberating. I still have my ups and downs and some things are much more challenging for me than for others (or it looks that way from where I'm sitting at least), however, I am gradually acquiring tools and hope to take steps towards what I want in life (personally, professionally, academically etc).

While I do understand that 'objectively' I am nowhere near old (in the sense that it is too late to do things because I don't have enough time) and I do intellectually realize that it is completely ok that everyone has their own timeline. I don't think I would ever judge someone for doings things on their own schedule, quite the contrary. And yet I am really struggling with accepting the fact that some things take longer for me than they do for others and that many people my age have managed to achieve so much already.

So - what I'm looking for is basically anything that could help me work through this 30-under-30 mindset. Perhaps there are some great books on people going through hardship (or not really) and then for whatever reason deciding to put in the effort in things that matter to them? Or movies or TV shows? Perhaps personal stories or tips? Anything is highly appreciated, really. I am mainly interested in somewhat realistic representation of the difficulties, introspection, being kind to oneself and not pushing self too hard and different perspectives.
posted by sharksmile to Society & Culture (6 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I'm sure there have been previous threads about exactly this, so if you've the energy to search, have a look.

I haven't, so let me just mention Kathryn Joosten, best known as Mrs Landingham on West Wing (and also apparently on Desperate Housewives) who started acting in community theatre aged 42 and moved Holllywood aged c. 56.
posted by penguin pie at 1:16 PM on January 2 [3 favorites]

Maybe this other AskMetafilter thread would be of value? Looking for profiles of people who dared to attempt big life changes. Just a suggestion, I could be wrong.
posted by forthright at 3:54 PM on January 2 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: How nice to read about real life examples of people like that, thanks everyone!

But I still would really like to read/watch about their experiences.
posted by sharksmile at 3:10 AM on January 3

The Guardian has a series of articles about people who've made major life changes after 60 (which is the kind of age I thought you meant by "later in life" - you have so much time!)
posted by fabius at 5:29 AM on January 3 [2 favorites]

IIRC, Julie Child started cooking in her thirties, but she was in her late forties when Mastering the Art of French Cooking was published and in her fifties when The French Chef premiered. Dearie, by Bob Spitz, is a good bio, but there's also her memoir, My Life in France. If you find those interesting, you might also enjoy the letters that she and Avis DeVoto exchanged, published in As Always, Julia. And there's also the movie Julie and Julia (maybe skip the Julie parts); an HBO show, Julia, which covers getting the PBS show started; and a 2021 documentary, also called Julia. She was a very driven person and worked hard to get the cookbooks published and her show on the air.
posted by amarynth at 6:57 AM on January 3

A Glorious Freedom by Lisa Congdon is a wonderful book - "The glory of growing older is the freedom to be more truly ourselves—with age we gain the liberty to pursue bold new endeavors and worry less about what other people think."
posted by ljesse at 11:22 AM on January 3 [1 favorite]

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