I am fifty. Well, fifty years and one week tomorrow. I had a wonderful birthday, filled with love and joy and a realization of just how much I mean to the people in my life who really matter to me. I have really good friends and a dear family and in spite of the uphill battle we have with raising Adam sometimes, life is good and I am fortunate and blessed.
At my surprise party one week before my birthday, it hit me that 50 is a big number. A true milestone, I was lucky to make it to 50. I have been on the planet for half a century. I have lived a whole lot of life with all kinds of twists and turns. I have seen historic things, heartbreaking things, beautiful things. I still witness war and crime and a world society that has tricked itself into thinking it has changed, but as we all can see, history repeats itself…just take a few minutes to look at the news and you’ll know what I mean. I have lived 50 years and I hope in the years to come I will see an end to racism, bullying, shaming, hatred, war and terrorism. I hope to see a cure for dreadful illnesses, I hope to see social media become socially responsible and that we care for our elders with respect and love as from it is them from whom we came. Without them, there would be no technology, no progress as they are the proverbial platform upon which the future was once built. Over the years I have enjoyed ageing. Sure age is just a number but wear and tear of the body especially an active one is real and sometimes painful. As I have gotten older, I know what to take seriously and what to let slide. I know in times when things are grim, “they too shall pass” because they always do and things do get better. Life is not here to drown you in sorrow, It is a journey filled with as many ups as there downs and we humans (when we allow ourselves to be )are strong and we can make each other stronger. I hope that as a human race we become selfless and regard others before ourselves and that we can acknowledge that we aren’t perfect and we definitely aren’t “the shit” and that once in a while, other people are actually better at something than we are and they should be commended and respected for it. I still hold hope for the future as I am trying to put two decent human beings on the planet and I know many parents who are working hard to do the same in spite of all the triviality and materialism about us. I have hope because somehow, I still think there are many wonderful youngsters who just might turn this world of cretins around.
Looking back on my life, I would say my youth was a no brainer. I did not struggle with any real issues, my problems were small and I had two solid parents who did a good job raising me and my sister – they really did the best with the tools they had at the time but most of all, we felt how much they loved us. Fast forward through a life filled with the joy of meeting wonderful people whom I hold close to my heart and call friend, to meeting and marrying the love of my life and bearing our two beautiful boys. I made my way through the grief of Adam’s diagnosis to mustering up all the strength I could to help him, enhance him and keep Logan’s life as “regular” as possible without him feeling every day like he had to wait or do things differently because his brother has autism. With Tom’s help, I had to work hard to not have autism break our family apart. With Tom and Logan and many knowledgeable people, we got Adam to where he is today, and even though puberty has been unkind, we feel strongly that Adam’s future is really bright. Because of Tom, this family of ours has had it’s share of plain old fun when we needed it the most and together we made certain that we will always hold on to hope.
Over the years I’ve started a career, did many jobs, continued a career, paused it to raise my children, changed a career and started a business with my husband. I’ve taught my kid how to deal with a bully, taught the other how to talk well beyond the years when he should have been speaking. I’ve done the mothering and then some and while I have no regrets,I do have unfulfilled wishes of my youth like many people, I suppose. Life has been harder than I had anticipated, but it has been more wondrous than I ever expected. Logan asked me the other day what it was life to have seen this many birthdays and that’s when a little bit of fear set in. I desperately want to see his and his brother’s story play out. I want to be here for as much of it as I possibly can. I want to retire with my husband and see places and do the things we often speak about. I worry that I don’t know if I have 5, 10, 20, or 30 more years on this planet. Will I make it to my 80’s? Will Tom? What is in store for us in the years to come? And then I realize, this year in that regard is like no other and I just have to live, love and embrace life for all it has to offer.
So with mammograms and colonoscopies and menopause issues par for the course from this age on, I will get checked when I have to, work a little harder at eating better, resting more and keep on moving and exercising and topically replacing that ever diminishing progesterone and then, I will just go out there and live. I will love. I will keep learning and I will laugh, basking in the glory of the wisdom and freedom that comes with age. I feel beautiful, I feel settled and I feel happy. All I want is peace. Peace with whom I interact, in my home, peace in my heart and mind and peace surrounding me and my family for the rest of our days. God bless me and my loved ones and dear friends and grant that we have the health and strength to head into many years beyond. We have lived a lot, learned a lot and for the most part, most of us have figured it out.
I have celebrated age 50 with so many of my friends, each birthday of each woman, a blessed and happy experience. It has been an honour to share and to continue to share these “fiftieth’ s” until the end of this year hopeful that we will do it all again for our 60th birthdays.