I am sitting here this morning thinking about what is too old? I am a "Boomer." I know, blame us for the wanton pollution, greed, self-centeredness, oh and the massive change in consciousness that came out of the 60s and turned governments and businesses on their heads. While we may have gone a tad too far with drugs, sex and rock & roll, like any self-correcting organism that wants to survive, those of us with proclivity to excess reined in our excesses and sought to turn our lives around in a way that we could actually start to become responsible, less self-centered and more open to correction in the direction of our lives. Many of us also transformed from people looking to get - to friends looking to give or share what we'd learned.
If you are one of the countless "Boomers" out there wondering - WTF - how did this happen? I went to bed at 39 and woke up at 65. Whoa, baby. That was fast. Ironically, these past several years in some ways have been the most trying I've ever encountered and paradoxically - the most transformative I've ever experienced.
I sustained a catastrophic brain injury, had to shut down my production company temporarily, go back and teach at a University. That didn't go too well given I'd lost 80% of my memory, had issues with my cognitive processing and found myself in a very scary place. What do you do when your entire life comes to a crashing halt?
First up: take an inventory. What are my assets and what are my liabilities? My biggest assets were my four children and my four grandkids. You will never understand that until you get there yourself. But trust me, if that’s all I accomplished in life, that would be enough. I feel so blessed for my family.
Liabilities: Lack of cash after investing a lot of money in offices and staff thinking that I never met an obstacle I couldn't overcome? Time for more corrections. Think sailing and having to tack. Sometimes we move away from our goal by heading in the opposite direction to where we want to go. Necessary when we are sailing upwind. I was sailing upwind. Then my mind started up. You are toast, Dave. You are too old. You've had your day in the sun, and what a day it was. Man oh man, I can never look back in my life and say, "Well, wish I'd done that." I did it all and then some. Then after a short bout of chronic infantile omnipotence - that is the ongoing ontological condition when we don't get what we want we lay on the floor (metaphorically) and kick our feet.
Then I started looking at my assets and liabilities. That was depressing. If I wanted to live in a Yurt, on Crown Land in the interior of BC - I would be in good shape. If I could hunt and trap my food, drive a 65 VW Beatle and learn how to rebuild engines myself.
Then I discovered an excellent physician who had me start doing prayer and meditation on top of some off-label medications to help profuse my temporal lobes with blood. Then a friend told me of an amazing and miraculous new medical intervention that is being used by the Doctors in Kingston Ontario treating the soldiers with PTSD from Afghanistan - it's named Neurofeedback. Undaunted, with a new position teaching at a university in Vancouver, I headed back out to Lotus Land from my house in Eastern Ontario and my apartment at Avenue Road and Heath in Toronto. In Vancouver, I began the regimen of doing two to three neurofeedback sessions a week. Miraculously after 40 of them one day my memory started flooding back in. Then my cognitive processes began firing again. I transformed David Brady Productions into two new entities; David Brady Communications and David Brady Books. I figure, what the hell. I'm proud of my name and what I've done - stick with the name people know from film and television.
Then I began to be inspired. So inspired I sat down and wrote three - not one, not two, but because I am a massive overachiever I wrote three books. My Serenity: Aging With Dignity, Living With Grace was published on December 13th by Post Hill Press in Nashville and distributed by Simon & Schuster. I have the other two up on Amazon.com
So, now I'm pushing well into my sixties when a friend who had lost about a half a million dollars with me in 1986 (my first Book - Survival: Transforming Childhood Trauma - chronicles how did I end up losing so much money after so much success) because I had cleared that up with him calls me up and says, "Hey, can you still get a movie made?" Did I mention I had the privilege of executive producing one of the most iconic Canadian Feature Films The Grey Fox that was presented by Francis Ford Coppola's Zoetrope Studios and Distributed by United Artists Classics? It was directed by the late, great Phil Borsos and produced by my old pal Peter O'Brian with the help of Barry Healey? It was nominated for two Golden Globe Awards - Best Foreign Picture and Best Actor for Richard Farnsworth. It won 7 Canadian Academy Awards.
So I said, "I don't want to do movies anymore. They are just too hard to do." My friend Stolp says, "What if it were a NY Times Best Seller?" I thought that would help. He said, "What if there were more than one?" All of a sudden my interest got piqued. "That would be interesting," I said.
So, here we are six months later, we've picked up 31 New York Times Best-Selling Books by an author who has written over 95 NY Times Best Sellers. And over 200 million books sold. Interesting.
Let me circle back to my opening question? What is too old. The author is in her 8th decade of her life. Like the old gunslinger in the Western's, I just don't jump too fast or too far. By keeping my gaze steady, and doing the next right thing in front of me, we are on the verge of potentially doing a deal in LA to adapt the thirty-one books as an ongoing series over five or six years.
Add to that the three books, my new take on my old university lecturing days as an inspirational and motivational speaker about overcoming adversity, finding real success in life and learning how to age with dignity and live with grace - I've decided the new too old is DEAD. I'll worry about that when I get there.
David Brady has 30 years of experience as an award-winning writer, producer and director of feature film and international television productions. In June, 2015 he founded David Brady Communications and changed his focus on writing nonfiction books.