Sunday, April 19, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me

Today, I turned thirty. Oh yes, I'm only thirty. I get that a lot. I made very good use of my twenties.

I've had a lot of questions about turning thirty, and a bit of teasing too. You know, how it feels, how I feel, etc. Apparently I should feel some way or another, and I do, but it's not quite what people anticipate.

Last week, Easter Sunday, I was singing in the special church choir. The congregation was standing with us, singing along. My eyes fell on an older woman of whom I have grown very fond. I noticed that she was wearing a hearing aid, something she'd never had before. I wondered how she might have felt, and I hoped it was lucky, lucky to have lived to be old enough to need help hearing. Then my eyes shifted forward to a friend of mine. We have known each other since we were both young married women with no kids. We now both have two apiece, very close to the same age. She also has an inoperable brain tumor. I thought then, compared to the older woman, how sad that must be, knowing that you will never be old enough to need a hearing aid, let alone see your kids grown and married and bearing families of their own.

But then, really, as I looked at all the people standing together, I recognized that we are all standing on this earth, and that we will all fall someday. I assume that my friend will fall before me, but it's possible it will be the other way around. We will all fall. It's the one inevitable fact of life. And while I may think that the woman with the hearing aid is lucky to have stood so long, I think that we are all lucky to be standing at all. Life is really such an amazingly complex balance, so fragile, so fraught with peril and risk, that every day we wake to find ourselves still standing, we should consider ourselves triumphant! So to hit a milestone like thirty, to still be standing, is a victory. Bring on forty! Bring on fifty! Bring on one hundred and ten!

But you know, in 80 years. Because today, I'm happy being thirty.


Anonymous said...

I love your writing Diana and I especially love this piece!

feistywon said...

Great thoughts and insights that really get me thinking. Happy Bday!

Melissa said...

Happy birthday. May you enjoy standing all the days from now until one hundred and ten, at least.

Siân said...

Happy birthday - Have fun!