Sunday, August 3, 2014

One Better Than Forty

Call me old, call me Over the Hill.  Do what you want.  I turned 41 today and I'm not ashamed.  I'm not treating my age like a dirty secret anymore because I think that's all a load of crap.  It's a number.  Why are we all so afraid to reveal our number?!  I'm fairly certain you're not going to look at me and think I'm 18.  So hiding my real age is probably pointless.  HELLO WORLD!!  I'M 41!

My birthday this year played out a little like a metaphor for my life....a one-day snapshot of who I am and where I am at this stage of life.  My day started early, like most other days in recent memory.  My two little kiddos were at my side at 6:20am wishing me a happy birthday, and quickly climbing into bed for birthday hugs. 

I debated going for a morning run. This is the story of my life.  I am a runner.  I still debate about it pretty much every time.  To go, or not to go?  Lie in bed for 10 more minutes or put on my shoes and get out the door?  Enjoy the cool morning air or snuggle up with a fresh cup of coffee?  Today I made it out the door for 3.8 miles of solitude and quietly putting one foot in front of another.  Victory.

When I got home from my run, my kids presented me with a stack of homemade birthday cards and drawings.  I opened some gifts.  My husband announced he couldn't find the "Happy Birthday" sign that we hang in the house.  (Editors note: It was hiding in the same place it's been since we moved into this house six years ago.)

I went to church. At 41 I have found peace with my God and my church.  I find comfort in the Sunday morning service.  My children feel safe and welcomed there.  The people are friendly and call me by name.   I went to the front of the church for birthday prayers, put my $0.41 in the little bank and told the whole congregation my age.  It always seems a little silly to me when people try to skirt around their age when we do these weekly birthday prayers at church. Seriously people.  Why can't we declare our age with the same pride and gusto we use to announce our years of marriage on our anniversary date?

Moving on.

After church I put dinner in the crock pot and went grocery shopping with my son.  I know.  Please try to contain your jealousy for my jet-setting lifestyle.  Our family eats.  I am the designated shopper.  Birthday or no, shopping I go. 

My daughter and I went for a swim.

My son woke up from his nap with a 103-degree fever. 

At 41, my life isn't glamorous.  Things that should come easy are still a daily struggle.  Things often don't go as planned.

At 41, my life is full of little kid hugs and construction paper birthday cards.  My body is healthier and faster than it was in my 20's.  Disappointments don't set me back as much as they used to because I'm a pro at finding the sliver lining. 

Birthday party cancelled = More ice cream for me. 

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