At the age of 45, Gwen McGeorge had a revelation.
The busy married mother of three realized lives is short. She had balanced work and family and had community involvement, including Relay for Life and United Way. She and her husband Eric visited Kansas City when their twin girls were on traveling basketball teams.
But something was missing.
“Sometimes you forget yourself,” she said. When a friend of her daughter’s asked her to join a flash mob that was dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” she took the chance.
It was the beginning of a new chapter in her life that had previously included traveling, dancing, cooking and partying. She draws and paints and listens to music, especially the blues.
In her biography it is mentioned: “She loves Irish whiskey. 2 fingers. Neat.”
All of this is if she isn’t writing her next romance novel or getting herself inked.
She got her first tattoo at the age of 45 after her revelation.
When McGeorge retires next year, she appears to be relaxing, not losing.
She worked in medical and legal professions before joining the full-time executive secretary of Prenger Family Center, Cole County’s juvenile detention and residential center.
“My family had some interaction with the Prenger Center many, many moons ago, and always valued what they do for families and children,” she said.
She loves to interact with the youth at the center. When she is able to help you or connect you to a community resource, she “fills the soul,” she said.
Two years ago the lifelong poet finally published her first novel “Volumes” under the pseudonym GM McGeorge. It’s a story that she had on her mind since she was 15.
“I love it. I’m proud of it,” she said of the novel, which has all of the five-star ratings on Amazon.com. She had traditional release offerings but decided to self-publish to keep the rights to her characters.
She has one more book ready and two more in the works. She writes adult romance which she said is currently the # 1 genre. Her books feature women who are no younger than 45.
“As a woman in my 60s, I don’t want to read about women in their 20s and 30s,” she said.
The 2019 tornado claimed McGeorge’s home but did not dampen her spirits. Likewise, age doesn’t seem to slow them down.
Her excitable, maybe even eccentric personality is still intact. She loves to laugh but don’t expect an answer. She will say it as it is.
“Life is too short, I’m not mean,” she said.
And she’ll laugh – or give you that straight answer – with her hair colored differently every month (orange in October for Halloween).
Dancing is another of McGeorge’s passions. Her dance instructor Larinda McRaven is a national master. You are involved in the Capital Thrillers, a flash mob that is part of the non-profit Capital Dance and Movement.
While she got her first tattoo at 45, she finished a sleeve at 63 – a collection of smaller tattoos that filled her entire arm and shoulder. Everyone has a meaning that represents life events.
She lives life to the fullest. It is these life experiences that spread ink all over their pages and body. Her next tattoo is planned for December and her next book won’t be out long after that.