Saturday, June 13, 2009

Another Day Older, Again!

Well, today is my birthday, again!
I am 47 years old today. Whew.
Since this seems to come around every year, I can't really justify any big ol' post about it.
It's another day. Another day older and another year to claim.

Last year's bday.

And as I mentioned last year, here, I have always had this weird "go underground" sense about my birthday. "Don't make a big deal of it, don't tell anyone, you don't deserve the notice or the fuss" But I did finally realize that my children deserve the example of rejoicing in a birthday (not that they have much problem with that...but you know that particular oddness sneaks up on you...maybe at, say, age 32, fair warning!).

And I want them to be grateful for every year and day they are given: good, bad, frustrating, harried, stressful, electric, dull, full and overflowing. Every one, it's a gift. And every bit of my old body; it's a gift, even when I notice all the many ways that age is taking it's inexorable claim on me. I could go on, you know I do {But it's my bday so I'll give YOU a gift a spare you. You're welcome...}.

But here is what I choose today to think about: instead of the 'whats," (as in what's wrong, what's old) I prefer, if only today, to think of the "who's"....by which I mean the people who mean something or so much to me.

The connections.
That is where you find the riches of getting older, another day, another year.
With that in mind, there are connections that spring to mind today...
And while I would go on about my husband, children, family, friends....this is not an award show or a roast and I'm not Sally Field.

Today the connections that spring to my mind are of a ridiculously cute small boy, who is precociously potty trained (not that I'm envious, not me, no sir...) and has a smile that lights up a room (I think it's actually a combo of his smile and his beautiful mama). It's his bday today too, go give him a big bday shout!


Another connection, dear to my heart: Today is the feast of St. Anthony of Padua.

Painting by El Greco

St. Anthony is a saint that I have long loved. Not only because we share a special day, but because I have found him to be a comfort and a trusted saint to turn to for prayers. He was known for his kindness, his courtesy, and his deep humanity. His appeal endures even now in this modern age; and it's no wonder, really. Because in this modern age, what we lack the most in our postmodern harsh world is just that: kindness, courtesy, humanity.

Which brings me back to the whole point of this post. To mark another day, another year older. And with that, to remember the best part: I am happier now than ever and I seem to be happier each year I get older.
How cool is that?
This inexorable claim of time gives me my mother's hands, and now feet and hair. This added day, added year, also gives me more connections, more relationships, deeper ones. Love is the wealth in life.
And so, on my birthday, I have the best gift.
I know.
I love so many.
I am rich.

12 comments:

Larger Family Life said...

Happy, happy Birthday!!

Tania
x

Jen said...

Happy birthday My Friend! I hope you have a wonderful celebration today surrounded by friends and family! I am so lucky to know you.

Colleen S said...

HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!
What a blessing you are to your family & friends!

Colleen S

msl said...

Happy, Happy Birthday!!!

Nadja Magdalena said...

Happy birthday, M! Today is also my daughter's baptismal feast...it is a good day all around.

Just a reminder: Corpus Christi mass at the Fathers of Mercy tomorrow at 10 if you can make it. Big picnic afterward!

Anonymous said...

Delurking to say I have to correct: we, Portuguese, say St. Anthony of Lisbon (Santo António de Lisboa). In fact, today it's a holiday in Lisbon (the holiday of the city of Lisbon) because of St. Anthony! Big celebrations here in honor of him! ;)
Love your blog!
Catholic Maria

Zoe said...

Happy birthday, Coffeemom! I agree, life gets better with age, because it gets richer with love and growth and hopefully, faith and gratitude. Hope it's a year of many blessings ahead.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, how rude of me! Congratulations!
Catholic Maria

Ted and Lori said...

I was just looking at the photos of Abe's party and realizing there the "ravages of time" on myself (hello, crow's feet, hello gray hair galore), and this post helps me put things in perspective. It's true about the connections. I was talking about it last night with our nephew (who is 22 and lives with us), about how you can suddenly find your life so filled with amazing connections, if you keep yourself open and aware. Of course, I talked about you.
Happy birthday. Thanks for being such an example. I told our nephew, "She's pretty much who I want to be 13 years from now).

Ryane said...

Happy Belated Birthday! Hope you enjoyed your special day.

courtney rose said...

Great post- and happy belated birthday!

I so appreciate the words you shared with us about setting an example regarding the joy of a birthday... of another year here... or embracing all that comes with it. I, too, am not a higer perker-upper when it comes to my birthday. But your very words- well, they have given me something to chew on.

Now. If you have any leftover cake, well, you should eat it for a morning snack. Nothing says lovin' like leftover cake.

Farmboy and Buttercup said...

Hope you had a wonderful day. Indeed, you are rich.