I did, I ate my cake for lunch on my birthday. I cut into it before the party at night. I am not ashamed. My birthday, my cake, my choice. Birthdays make me a little selfish! Our kids, my dad and stepmom came to party with us at night and they didn’t seem to mind that there was a piece missing. Just so you know, I got right back on the no sugar wagon. My husband took the cake to work with him Monday. I think he was a little worried what he might find when he came home Monday night if I was alone with it all day. That man knows me too well.
I am taking a brief hiatus from writing about spiritual disciplines this week. Not from observing them mind you, just writing about them. I had a birthday and wanted to share a few things about the passing of another year.
I am fifty-one. Already. I feel like I just accepted the whole big 5-0 thing! I’m embracing my fifties and, honestly, don’t have a whole lot to complain about. I made a short list in my journal on my birthday morning this past Sunday. I am a deep thinker on these milestone days in life and I wanted to share a little of it with you.
Top 5 things I have noticed in my first year of 50:
1. It has come to my attention I might have missed my calling. You see, this past year my talents as a stripper have been polished almost to perfection. When a hot flash occurs I can rip off layers of clothes so quickly there should be a plethora of dollar bills somewhere around me when it’s over.
2. It’s anticlimactic. After the celebrations are over for the big 5-0, nobody cares. And you are more than happy not to call attention to the fact that you are now half a century.
3. I might find myself casually mentioning my age to strangers more often. Like the clerk at Target or a waitress. You might say, “Ever since I turned 50…” Then you wait. Wait for them to interrupt and say, “NO WAY are you 50.” If they don’t say it, you find yourself feeling hostile towards them.
4. I cry so much easier. I treasure precious moments like I am 90 and am going to die tomorrow. When my grandsons look at me with those big blue eyes or sweet brown eyes, I am jello. Their wish is my command.
5. Life is definitely about the journey, not the destination. I am much more intentional about living life to the fullest to get there.
There are more, but those are the ones that stand out to me almost daily.
The other thing I did in my quiet time on my birthday was read through an old journal that had the entry of my last birthday before recovery. I had tears in my eyes when I was done. Tears of gratitude that I am not living a life of shame and guilt anymore. I’d like to share with you what I wrote that morning…
September 10, 2017
Today, my 51st birthday. Wow, how is that possible? I rejoice as I spent some time this morning in an old journal and can see where I was to where I am now. The daily struggle of sobriety was the most prevalent thing in my life. That is gone. Miraculously gone. Now I celebrate my sobriety and where it has brought me in this beautiful, sober, life. To better relationships in my family, loyalty and love to my writing, new friends, and best of all grandsons. Most importantly my spiritual life. Trusting in God and feeling his peace and love more than ever. Have I “arrived?” No-and will not until I reach eternity. I did not accomplish all I wanted to in my first year of 50, but I take pride in what I was able to do.
When I read the old journal this morning it was all about my need and desire to quit and how scared I was to try. About how I knew God had planned so much more for me than this, but I was so scared to take the leap of faith and quit drinking. I see this all coming to fruition now. I am so glad I surrendered for good. I can’t imagine the gratitude of this moment ever lessening.
What are my goals for this year? I pray that when I make my September 10, 2018 entry in this journal I am closer to God and have worked hard on deepening my spiritual life. That my book is complete and my writing journey is ongoing. That my sobriety is still intact. And that Otto’s surgery is over and successful and we have two healthy one-year-olds running around to try and keep up with Landon. I know I don’t have control over all these things, but I intend to stay close to God in all of it and follow his leading.
Psalm 9:10 (Get it? Like my day 9/10. I thought that was kind of ironic.)
“Those who know your name, trust in you. For you Lord have never forsaken those who seek you.”
So I will keep seeking and trusting Lord in this crazy wonderful life.