…and I am not 29, 35, or any other number lower than my actual age of 38. Yes, that's right, as shocking as it may be, given my youthful beauty, charisma and energy, I am now 38. I have almost completely descended the far side of the mountain of my 30's. And not only do I not mind getting older, I can't wait for it.
A close friend of mine told me a story about losing a friend to cancer at a young age. A few years later, my friend celebrated a birthday that her friend never had the chance to. From that year on, she was proud to tell people her age because she knew that her friend would have given anything to have had the opportunity to be "that old". And after experiencing so much loss and sadness in the past year, I feel that fortunate, too.
Besides the fact that I feel lucky to be healthy and strong at the age of 38, I am happy today because I had a great, great day. For the first time in a while. For the past few years (truthfully, I don't remember the last time I really enjoyed a birthday) I have dreaded my birthday. In fact, last year, I was so miserable on my birthday that after picking a fight with my husband and rejecting my birthday cake, I swore that this year, I would be going away for my birthday, alone.
Fast-foward a year and I see life, my life, so much differently. I understand how blessed I am to be surrounded by so many people that love me so much every day, not just on my birthday. I am learning that its not that serious and that most of the things that freak me out are really not worth freaking out about. I am slowly opening my eyes to the plethora of small gifts and blessings that the world gives me every. single. day.
Like the song my daughter wrote for me as my birthday present (sung to the song of Katy Perry's California Girls, this was cut & pasted from the word document she emailed to me so excuse her spelling):
Peace out, my friends, I am off to enjoy the remaining minutes of my special day and the remaining crumbs of my coconut cream pie before midnight, when calories start to count again.*
*Jewish law of dieting #24: calories don't count on your birthday