It’s my birthday today. I am 58 and I’m darn proud of it!
58 was a birthday I was looking forward to more than any other. For you long-term blog readers you know that my husband passed away from lung cancer when he was 57 1/2. With my own cancer diagnosis didn’t know if I would ever make it this far…but I’m here. I’m happy, and I am looking forward to another year.
Back in 1965, there was no camera in the delivery room or even at the hospital. The first pictures I know of that were taken of me was on this day. I’m assuming it was at my baptism because the photo is dated March 1966. My dad, who is holding me in the picture, was a farmer and I can count the times he ever wore a suit so this day must have been special. I recognize the lamp as being at my parent’s home so I can pretty confidently say it was taken at my baptism. My dad was 46 at the time.
I was the youngest in a family of five kids. I had three older brothers and one older sister.
The next two pictures were taken when I was almost one. You can see I’ve had chubby cheeks my whole life. HA!
I know many people dread birthdays. I did at one point in my life. I was “29” for about four years. I just didn’t want to be 30. So if anyone ever asked me how old I was, I would say I was 29 for the second time…that meant I was 30. I think I was 29 for the 4th time meaning I was 32 before I told anyone how old I really was. For some reason, I didn’t want to own my age.
Today I’m owning my age in a big way. I am proud to be 58. After living life a few more years past 29, I’ve come to know that people don’t always make it to 58 so birthdays are a good thing to celebrate.
For me, my next big birthday goal isn’t 60 like most people have. My birthday goal is 62. My mom was almost 62 when she passed away. I’d love to make it to 62.
One time I told my kids that my goal was to live to 62 so I could get passed the age my mom was when she died. I was half joking and half serious. When you have cancer, talking about death and even making light of it can happen. It has for me and my family.
My daughter Kelli was taken aback by my comment. She was flabbergasted that my goal was only to live to be 62. Then I made the comment that if I got to 62 I would be willing to consider a new goal. HA!! I’ll take whatever God gives me and be thankful if all along the way.
So I guess what I want to say to you all is…celebrate each birthday. We don’t know how many we will get. When I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer right after my 50th birthday, seeing birthday number 58 suddenly wasn’t so certain. I sure am thankful I made it this far…and I’m hoping I just might make 62…not because of social security…not any of the typical reasons, only because it means I celebrated more birthdays than my mom did…and she died way too young.
I’m off to celebrate. I think (I actually know) a Bloody Mary will happen before I go to bed tonight. Cheers friends…and I wish you all many happy birthdays beyond 62…and even further. Whatever you do, celebrate those birthdays. We just don’t know how many we will get.