Turning 40

I’m turning 40 this week. It’s bringing up some weird emotions for me. I don’t really mind getting older. I got a text from my aunt this morning referring to my sisters and me as “you kids.” I had to laugh. Age is relative, right? I am nearly 40, but I will always be one of the kids to her. Yesterday, my husband instructed our son to hang his cell phone up. That made me laugh too. You know you are old when you think you are hanging your cell phone up, instead of putting it on the charger.



Back to the birthday emotions…Birthdays always bring up some grief. Even as an adult, my birthday is just not the same without my mom and dad. Maybe someday I will get over that. Maybe not. The hardest part, every year, is getting specific about something that I want. My kids, husband and sisters all start asking the same question. “What do you want for you birthday?” It shouldn’t be that hard, right? But it is. I have no answers. If I answer with “World peace” again, I fear that I will be getting socks and underwear.



So what do I want? I have puzzled all weekend over it. I know that I want time. I want lunches with friends, drives into the mountains with my husband, and trip to a mystical lake that I love. I want to wander her shores for hours, gathering stones and sticks and hearing her stories. I want to take a whole weekend to drive around and visit ancient cemeteries. I want to sit with the graves of babies and grandmothers and drink in the essence of their lives and the love that surrounds them. I want to sit with friends and family and swap jokes, stories and insults. I want I want to laugh until my ribs hurt and tears run down my legs.



So maybe I really do know what I want for my birthday. I want to relish every second of life, with no time clock ticking. That isn’t too much to ask, is it?