06 February 2005

Happy Birthday to Me! Warning - Fire Risk February 6th - HIGH!!!!!!

"Hear 'em singing Happy Birthday
Better think about the wish I made
This year gone by ain't been a piece of cake
Every day's a revolution
Pull it together and it comes undone
Just one more candle and a trip around the sun

Amazing. Somehow I am turning 45 years old today. I have no idea how this is possible. I have done the math several times, and every single time that I subtract 1960 from 2005, I still come up with 45. It must be true, but I find it hard to believe that 45 years could whiz by so fast.

I used to wonder what people meant when they said time becomes so much more precious as you get older, but I think I know now. It does. I look back over the time I've wasted, savored, the minutes that seem to go on for hours and the hours that felt like minutes. Most of it is like a flash and, with only a few notable exceptions, I'd live it all again in a NY Minute. Even the moments that made me wince, got me to the place I am today. This day. And it is this day that I am celebrating all of the past days. Even the ones I would never wish to do over and aren't so fun to recollect.

I'm just hanging on while this old world keeps spinning
And it's good to know it's out of my control
If there's one thing that I've learned from all this living
Is that it wouldn't change a thing if I let go...

I'm having some friends over today. Most of whom I've grown extremely close to andI have learned to respect immeasurably in the past 13 months. A few folks will be here that I've known longer, and they mean a great deal to me as well. And of course, there will be family. I do hope they behave! :-)

Three hours before my company arrives, I hope for things. I want lots of smiles. Warm, heartfelt embraces, lots of laughter and I'll even take some good-natured hits about turning 45. I can handle it. I'm a lot tougher than I look, and I can give as good as I get.

I'm sitting here imagining who will be in my home, and I can't wait to see every single person who I will have the privilege and honor of sharing this day with; people who have inspired me, given me hope, direction, love, affection, kindness and so many oppportunities to smile and really laugh - the kind of laugh that comes from deep inside and is genuine.

Even at 45, I feel like I've only scratched the surface and what I do know, is that I really know so little. I know that I want to spend more time learning and exploring the things I'm coming to realize matter most in this life. I had a sea change on January 12, 2004 and my course was corrected in a major way. While I hated the action that recalibrated my internal compass, over a year after the fact, I know for certain that it didn't simply save my life; it recreated my life in only the best ways possible.

I really did learn that there are far more things out of my control and that, if I chose the right path and leaned on things that were true, it was finally, for the first time in my life, safe to completely let go. I had to let go, to finally get a handle. It's a good ride.

No, you never see it coming
Always wind up wondering where it went
Only time will tell if it was time well spent
It's another revelation
Celebrating what I should have done
With these souvenirs of my trip around the sun

For as much as I don't look forward to the advent of wrinkles, crinkles and too many sun freckles (I refuse to call them "age spots" - sun freckles just sounds better, don't you think?), I am celebrating the fact that I am alive and kicking and able to celebrate! If the price of admission means another number attached to my age, that's still a pretty fair deal. Today I may be marking my 45th birthday, but I'm still not one single day over 12 years old, in many aspects, and I'll take that as a good sign.

Yes, I'll make a resolution
Then I'll never make another one
Just enjoy this ride on my trip around the sun
Just enjoy this ride ...
Until it's done"

I have so many wishes, that when it comes time to blow out all those candles, I'm not sure I can distill my wishes into just one. I'm willing to give it a try, though. I just hope they have a bucket of water around in case those flames get entirely out of hand.

I am grateful for one more year, my family, many new friends, steadfast older friends, growing pains, challenges, stumbling blocks and more blessings than any one person has a right to count. Come to think of it, I can't think of anything to wish for because it feels as if I have everything I need.

It's a good time to be me.

I'll have a post-party report soon and there may even be a photograph or two.

Have a wonderful day.