random thoughts from a post-birthday girl

It is raining today. Actually it is pouring. A deluge. Monsoon-ish. Not that I have ever actually been in a monsoon. At least I don’t think so. 

Anyway, yesterday was my birthday and today it’s pouring outside and I thought it was a perfect time to write a rambling random post, the type of which is so very personally satisfying and sometimes worth reading. 

52. 

I made it. 

I really came close to understanding how precious that is yesterday. Nothing drastic happened to bring this thought upon me, it just popped into my head of its own accord. I made it to 52. I have lived 52 years despite all those million of reasons for me not to. It’s actually very humbling in a way. If you think of life as something you survive, then I have survived 52 years for no particular reason except that nothing fatal has happened to me. 

Boy am I happy about that. 

Every year I come closer to understanding what blessings and what baggage I am bringing with me through this life. My family, my genetic make-up, my choices in life, my relationships with other people…all these things enter my world by the day, the minute, the nano-second. I am probably not even aware of the majority of what I am carrying with me. Every day I seesaw between knowing how fortunate I am and struggling to live life to the fullest (whatever that means).

And yet, despite the struggles and the blessings, I am still here and remarkably very much like the ME that was here 20 or 30 years ago. Sure, parts of my body are a little lower than they used to be. Sure, I can’t remember, or see or hear shit anymore. Sure, my body is still trying to decide whether to let me enter full blown menopause. But I am mostly the same person. I have always had bouts of melancholia. Sometimes it takes over my life and sometimes it is just a mild hum in the background. I have always been relatively healthy physically. I have always struggled with acne and sore feet and other various aches and pains. I am a slightly better cook now, unless you ask my husband who can’t stand being in the kitchen when I prepare a meal. I still don’t like swimming or riding a bicycle very much and I can’t roller skate, rollerblade or ice skate to save my life. I am still a mediocre piano player and I LOVE to dance. Classical music, show tunes, Simon and Garfunkel are on my iPod instead of in my pile of albums. I still love Carroll Burnett, Tim Conway and Harvey Korman and anyone else who makes me laugh so hard I’m crying. I love writing, sculpting creating, golden retrievers, cats, sunrises, sunsets, walks on the beach…wait, this is starting to sound like an application for a dating service. You get the picture…

So what’s different? Knowledge I guess. Or the knowledge of what I don’t know. And there is so much I don’t know. I am also aware that there is a lot I will never know and never understand. And I’m good with that. I actually like my little corner of the world, my teeny portion of this universe. That’s not to say I don’t try to expand my knowledge, it’s just that I know that my knowledge is and always will be a finite entity. And sometimes what I think is knowledge is just rumor, theory or a good old-fashioned guess. As long as I am still around, I am going to gather knowledge…through experience, reading, thinking, talking, writing, creating, laughing…any way I can.

On another note, some of this post was inspired by the passing of Robin Williams yesterday. (Ahhhh, now you understand, right?) In order to live life to the fullest, sometimes you just have to live. Unfortunately, this can mean living with pain, in pain, through pain, constant pain. And that ain’t easy. I don’t blame him for wanting to end the pain. Only he knows how excruciating it was. There are no rule books for how to deal with a brain chemistry that is constantly wavering, constantly moving you from one place to another with no warning and no safety net. And there is nothing that anyone else can do to fix it.

I am honored to have witnessed his gifts and I am sad to have known about his pain. I wish he had found a way to continue to live with it.

But I can say I’m still here. For some reason, here I am. 

And it’s still raining.

 

puddles, damp leaves and gray skies.
puddles, damp leaves and gray skies.

 

15 thoughts on “random thoughts from a post-birthday girl

  1. A wonderful post 🙂 and yes a celebration of a life less perfect…much like all of us…my birthday approaches and I will be 53..i think..when you start to forget how old you are then…I guess you are old…and I like you wonder at how I got to be this age..but I am glad..warts and all I am here….and yes yesterday was beyond sad….I have an idea of Robin Williams pain..this beast he was living with..i hope he has peace…and yes as I get older I understand less…it was only with the wisdom of a teen that I knew everything…so dance around your kitchen an embrace your day my sweet..we are lucky because we know the fragility of life and we live with hope 🙂 Hugs and loves Bev xxx

    1. Thanks Bev. I like your last sentence…we are lucky because we know the fragility of life and we live with hope…it makes me cry just thinking about it. Gosh I am a mush. I don’t really think numbers matter very much but as we get older we tend to measure things in decades instead of years.

  2. Many happy returns of the day – very pleased that you are in such a good space. As an older but not necessarily wiser woman I find that it’s understanding that I need to appreciate the moment I’m experiencing that has made me a happier person. To not always want more or be waiting for something better…just to be warm and fed and content in the moment.

    1. Yes, that contentment of what you have right now is key. Although I do think it is still a good thing to want to achieve and be more. I still feel like I have not even come close to my full power as an artist and sometimes I have to remember to be more patient with the whole process…therein lies the wisdom that I am still trying to achieve.

      1. Yes on reflection I didn’t mean to describe a state of total contentment! Still having things you achieve, albeit at a less furious pace, is a must. Thanks for responding and making me think more thoughtfully.

    1. Thanks Gallivanta…Somehow I don’t think our physical, chronological ages matter much, I think you are way ahead of me in wisdom though. Someday I may catch up to you on that one…or not. 🙂

      1. Oh dear. Some days I don’t think I have any wisdom at all. But, I feel that we both have a lot of life experience, some of which we probably could have done without, and, so, maybe, one day, we can both pronounce ourselves wise. 🙂

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