What Was 50 Like?

This is the last night that I am 50 years old.  I don’t usually think of things on anniversaries, but half a century was an important mark.  It’s importance was perhaps exaggerated for me, because I have an uncertain life expectancy.  Lupus has pulled me away from my genetic expectation of long life to something inbetween and undefinable, but it has also given me an excellent appreciation of the time I’ve already had, and every minute that is to come.  Meanwhile, these are the things that jump out at me about the last year:

  • I didn’t panic when my daughter announced that she wanted to take a semester off from college.  Somehow I understand that she and I are different people, and that her path can differ from mine without being wrong.
  • I didn’t settle for the wrong man, even though my sympathy pulled me towards him.
  • I celebrated a year of having my Etsy store, and opened a second one that is invisible until I stock it.  It will be my children’s store.
  • I made bail for someone for the first time.
  • I lived through-and mostly enjoyed-my daughter’s debutante ball and all that participation entailed.
  • I explored lots of new avenues in knitting, including socks and cables and designing with short rows.
  • I made myself more knowledgeable about the fibers available for knitting, adding banana and corn and bamboo to my stash.
  • I started a blog and continued it on a consistent basis (at least since early December).
  • I made drinking water a habit.
  • I saw an African-American man and a white woman vying for the Democratic nomination for the 2008 presidential race. 
  • I made an effort to associate with people who shared some of my more important interests (um, that would be in the area of crafting, not religion).
  • I continued my lifelong habit of periodically changing churches.
  • When my dog brought a dead rat in the house, I didn’t die; I carried it back out.
  • I had a prolonged flare of lupus during this age of 50.  I was on higher doses of prednisone for longer times than I had taken in several years.  As always, the prednisone caused severe hunger and I managed to gain 35 pounds.  This means I’m starting 51 with some serious decisions to make about my weight.  Whatever I decide, it can’t stay where it is. 
  • I went through some severe ups and downs in my father’s health.  He had always been the healthier parent, and it was heartbreaking to see him dwindle and lose some of his sharpness and ability.  Even more difficult has been his anger and frustration as he deals with those losses.  However, he has a strong will to be alive and kickin’, and I am looking forward to his 90th birthday during my age 51 spring.
  • My daughter made decisions and exhibited actions that showed me her adult status.  I did a lot of marvelling at her steadiness, sense of responsibility, and ability to use foresight.
  • I had my first highlights and took my first sauna. 
  • I continued to anger people with my dislike of handguns and assault weapons, my lack of understanding for the need of them in American households, and my disdain for the legislative wusses who won’t pass tighter gun control laws. 
  • I signed more petitions and wrote more letters to elected officials than I have in the entire previous 49 years of my life. 
  • I lowered my carbon footprint by a tremendous lot.
  • Yet another avenue opened up for lupus treatment.  Thanks, God! 

 49 minutes to age 51. 

Peace. 

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4 Responses

  1. Happy Birthday! Enjoy and indulge in something that makes your heart leap with joy.

  2. Just saying happy birthday – heres to a wonderfully healthy year! XOXO

  3. Happy Birthday!! Hope this year goes wonderfully. I am surviving 51 and so will you.

  4. So Owl wrote . . . and this is what he wrote:

    HIPY PAPY BTHUTHDTH THUTHDA
    BTHUTHDY.

    Pooh looked on admiringly.

    “I’m just saying ‘A Happy Birthday’,” said Owl carelessly.
    “It’s a nice long one,” said Pooh, very much impressed by it.
    “Well, actually, of course, I’m saying ‘A Very Happy Birthday with love from Pooh.’ Naturally it takes a good deal of pencil to say a long thing like that.”
    “Oh, I see,” said Pooh.

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