I had a birthday last week. I took off from work and spent the first day of Year 47 having lunch with a dear friend, and then coffee with another. I did a little shopping and hung out with my family. It was leisurely and lovely.
To be honest though, the allure of birthdays stopped being a thing several years ago, and the fact that I’m nearing a half-century on this earth isn’t really something I look forward to. I try to approach aging with an “attitude of gratitude,” so to speak, but I’ll admit that it’s a struggle for me. Often I don’t feel like I even know the person in the mirror with her increasing wrinkles, sagging skin, and all the aches, pains, and emerging health issues that can come with getting older.
Not that there aren’t good things about it, obviously. As I age, I get to watch my daughter grow into something amazing that I never could have imagined. I get to care less about what other people think and be braver about making my own way. I see more clearly the beauty (and yes, the ugliness, too) of the world, but I get to more deeply carve my own space in it. The friendships that are supposed to, deepen; the ones that aren’t, wane. I see things clearer, even as my eyesight fades.
I really like this poem. Take a listen.
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