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8.09.2021

My Speed Limit Trip Around The Sun!

Another year around the sun for me has come and gone. I banked the close of my birthday yesterday at midnight.  My dad lovingly said I was now the speed limit - 55.  At 80, he declared he wished he were 55 again.  It was his admonishment to foster a grateful heart for where you are before it's gone, to quite possibly something worse!

How did I get to be 55!?  Where had all the time gone? Much like a day on vacation, what did I tangibly have to show for it besides some doo-dads? I definitely showed some outward markings, much like rings on the inside of a tree. Lines, furrows, blonde hair mixed with lots of white, a general look of being both my age AND being a woman my age were now pillars in my physical world. Though I wanted to escape what I saw, age plodded away daily and silently. It  seemed to collectively collide with greater force then I recalled a few years back. 

What could I show for 55 years of life in my mind, soul and spirit? Within those limitless wells were the only  rudders I could now affect control over. Age had brought a more realistic and spiritual view to the understanding and acceptance of the word control. I fought less against the control of things that were futile - things I would not ever be able to nor was I designed to wrap my hand around. I grew in the understanding that life is both big and hard, and yet simplistic all at the same time. I was not in control of anything except how I responded to what entered my life - either by my own or other's choices or merely by the normal continuum of life. The know became more deeply rooted in an elementary principle; only love matters - both towards others, to myself and, ultimately to God. That was it. Period.

Though master plans may exist, they mostly consist of today strung to tomorrow and the day after that and the day after that. Misnomers of greatness leave out the daily-ness of life and all the choices that lie in just a day. I was more able to let myself off the hook for the unrealistic and limiting view of what success looked like in our culture. Instead, my frame had changed which made the picture seem exceedingly enough and even more beautiful.

 I sat at my parent's dining room table several nights ago in celebration of my 55th birthday surrounded by my dad and mom, both sisters and their mates, and my husband. As my dad prayed over the meal, as is custom in our family, he also prayed over me. What had not changed in all these years is that I cried. That too is a custom at nearly all family gatherings, I usually cry. As my dad concluded his prayer with an amen, before eyes were even fully open, I heard my mom say, "Don't cry Nan!"  It was too late. The tears starting flowing at the privilege of hearing my dad's voice and sitting with those I love so dearly.  

My hope is on this, my next new trip around the sun, I can be more reticent to the pulls of our cultural fascination with staying visually young. I am alive, which is a gift each day. And, for me and my tenuous health, a miracle daily! The master plan past today only requires love, which is the root of all. Everything else, whatever that may be, comes in behind that.  

Me and my Kizzy-granddaughter @ Silver Beach.

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