Today is my birthday. I’m not sure how I feel about it. I’ve spent most of the last couple of days thinking on it, processing, trying to figure out what it means for me and to me. I’ve spent today with family and friends, but, still, it was in the back of my mind.

I’ve never been one to make a big fuss about my own birthday. I’ve always thought it was just another day and found it a little strange (nice but strange) that people go out of their way to do nice things for me on this one day of the year. I try to do nice things for the people around me all year long, and I guess I always just expected the same. Plus, I’m shy, so I feel a little — okay, a LOT — uncomfortable when people make a fuss over me. For a lot of reasons, I guess I’ve never given my birthday much thought.

stuff from my office shelves

This year, though …

I dunno. This year feels different to me. This year, I am 45. 45 … 45 … 45 … The number keeps echoing around in my head until I think I will go crazy from having it on a continuous loop in my brain. It sounds so strange. And final.

“Age is just a number.” That’s what people say, right? I know it can sound simpering and insincere, but I’ve always believed this to be the truth. I guess that’s why I never felt overly fussed about the passing of my own timeline. Until now.

Realizing I am closer to 50 than I am to 30 — and that I am light years away from my 20s — has hit me particularly hard. There are things I had expected to have done by this point in my life. There are dreams I had. There are things I still want to do. But life, being the fickle mistress she is, doesn’t always work out the way we expect or hope or dream.

dog statues in my office

Age is just a number. I do think this is true. I really do. But I don’t know how to let go of those dreams I have held closely for so long that, now, I know will not come true. I don’t know how to figure out who I am, even now. There are things I still want to do, but I don’t know how to look at 45 as a beginning for new adventures, instead of an ending to lost dreams.

Perhaps, by the time I am 46, I will have all the answers I need.

Or not.

10 thoughts on “Today

    • Thank you! What a sweet and thoughtful wish. It is one I shall keep in my heart, particularly when life becomes chaotic and unmanageable, as life tends to do. 🙂

  1. Happy birthday my sweet friend. I feel your words, every line. I turn 43 in a few days and I share some of the emotions you so eloquently expressed. There is one thing I know for certain. There is only one you. You are absolutely perfect in your own skin. Sometimes it is hard through our own eyes to see the reflection of our perfect beauty. But others see it and believe me your light shines. Start a new list full of dreams. It’s never too late. It’s being excited about our dreams and holding out hope that they are still alive that keeps the life inside of us going as well. Hope you had a wonderful day and yes, there should be a fuss because there is only one you on this great big planet 😉

    • Thanks so much! It’s hard feeling comfortable in one’s own skin. I’ve always had trouble with that. When I was younger, I remember thinking I would have everything figured out by the time I was a certain age. (At that time, I pegged “35” as that age, because I couldn’t fathom being older than that — LOL!) Funny how some things get answered and other mysteries crop up to take their place. I guess that’s how life goes.

      I like the idea of a new list of dreams. Although one big dream — to be more successful and more consistent with my writing — will always remain the same. Other dreams, like having the bigger family I always wanted, will have to remain unfulfilled, and I will have to figure out how to let them go. But it’s hard.

      Happy early birthday to you! (Or, perhaps, your birthday has already passed by now, as I was pretty late in replying to comments.) I hope you have a wonderful day, too. And that you will remember your own advice: You are beautiful and wonderful, and there is only one you!! 🙂

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