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Category: Life Events / Topics: Change Choices and Decision Making Lifestyle, General Media Movies Optimal Aging Planning Retirement

Burying Your One Great Life

by Leona Bergstrom

Posted: February 11, 2023

A scene in the December 2022 movie "Puss in Boots: Last Wish" captures how many Boomers feel as they transition into retirement. Many feel they are burying their identity—their essence—their purpose…

With great meticulousness and care, he placed his feathered hat, sword, cape, and signature leather boots at the bottom of a newly dug shallow grave. Then, reviewing the heroics of his past eight lives, he crowed, cried, and grudgingly resigned himself to giving up his career. The infamous Puss In Boots was retiring.
Spoiler alert: This describes a profound scene in the recent animated movie Puss In Boots: Last Wish, released by Dreamworks in December 2022. It is noteworthy because it captures how many Boomers feel as they transition into retirement. Many feel they are burying their identity – their essence – their purpose. The future seems uncertain and sometimes unremarkable. 

Puss In Boots got one thing right in this burial exercise – he reviewed the events of his life, noting the victories and accomplishments. Contrary to our mortal experience, he had already enjoyed eight lives and was contemplating spending his final one in a safe, uninspiring rest home for cats. The turning point of the movie is when Puss In Boots realizes that he still has one life left (cats supposedly get nine) to pursue his dreams and acquire his last wish. 
The story of Puss In Boots: Last Wish holds many lessons for us. Not the least of which is that burying the outer vestments of our job does not take away the essence of who we are. We still have passions, gifts, strengths, and purpose. We still have the opportunity to fully live our one great life. You’ll have to watch the movie to see how Puss In Boots redeems his. We invite you to connect with Re-Ignite or read our book, Third Calling: What are you doing the rest of your life?  to consider yours!

Puss In Boots: The Last Wish
presented by Dreamworks Animation; Distributed by Universal Studios 12/2022


A life of adventure is ours for the taking, whether we're seven or seventy. Life for the most part is what we make it. We have been given a responsibility to live it fully, joyfully, completely, and richly, in whatever span of time God grants us on this earth.
--Luci Swindoll

The thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come so they may have life, and may have it abundantly.
-- Jesus, John 10:10 NET

Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day.
-- Pope Paul VI

There'll be two dates on your tombstone and all your friends will read 'em but all that's gonna matter is that little dash between 'em.
-- Kevin Welch

Take my life and let it be
consecrated, Lord, to thee.
Take my moments and my days;
let them flow in endless praise,
let them flow in endless praise.
--Francis R. Haverdal
(written in 1874)

Search all articles by Leona Bergstrom

Leona Bergstrom is co-founder, with her husband Richard, of ChurchHealth/Re-Ignite in Edmonds, Washington.

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Posted: February 11, 2023

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