Monday, October 25, 2010

50 + 2

Yesterday I turned 52 glorious years old. October 24.

I am half a century plus two. That's five decades plus two. And I'm proud of it.

My mother-in-law always said that age doesn't matter. Perhaps to some it doesn't. It does to me. I had my childhood years, teens (oh dear God thank-you for letting me survive), my twenties (marriage, children, houses, pets, jobs), thirties (children in their teens, oh dear!), my forties (teens in college and out), and now my fifties (empty nest-most of the time, and being a gramma). I'm clapping for myself! You may join if you like.

As I've rolled into my fifties, I am more sure of myself, don't care a lot about...a lot of things, am more patient, if a bit sarcastic, I love more, look for the little things in life that please me: diet coke from the fountain, laughing kids, the color of fall leaves, cotton undies (just sayin'), garden raised tomatoes, my husband's hand in mine--wait, he hates to hold hands, but when he does I appreciate it, slippers, text messages from my kids, the sound of my pond, and I could go on and on...the fact is, I love what's happening in my life (except for my thighs). My family is fabulous, the dogs are good, my husband loves me, and everyday that God lets me wake up I am grateful.

Call me blessed. I do. Happy Birthday Kelly!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

More Slaps...

"They" say death comes in threes. I believe this. First, a former student and recently, on October 5th to be exact, my sister's husband, Vince, passed away. We knew he had a limited time left, but this was too soon. It's always too soon. Their boys, 18 and 20, are the best and in looking at old family photos, the pride and joy was so evident in Vince's eyes as he romped or just posed with his sons.

My heart breaks for Susie as she faces each day without her husband. Suddenly, she is a business owner, has her own job at Nords, homeowner, mom and all each 'hat' entails. It's a lot! Susie is very logical and strong, practical and funny, kind and generous, and now, alone. She has her boys, her mom and family, and perhaps the best friends in the world, but I know in her heart of hearts she aches. I ache when she does. The older sister in me comes out and I want to swoop down with hugs and cups of tea. So I do. It's what we do as family; intrude and love.

Then, just a week later, a dear dear friend of my mom and a former neighbor of 41 years passed away. This was too much for my mom. To watch her youngest daughter lose her husband and then to lose a dear friend she's known for half her life was difficult. Mom called me nearly coming apart and I just hurt for her. This woman was a pillar, a steadfast friend (she's the first call I made when my dad died so mom wouldn't be alone...funny how phone numbers you haven't called in years come back lickety-split), and one wicked seamstress.

I read somewhere that in the United States we don't talk about death much and it's true. It's mysterious and to some, frightful. What would happen if we talked about dying like we do birth, a celebration of one's life? I don't know the answer, just askin'.