Sunday, July 6, 2008

Birthdays and Blessings

I just turned 34 again.

I’ve been turning 34 for so long, I can’t remember how old I really am. And since no one is charitable enough to card me when I order a glass of wine, I don’t have to look at my driver’s license or even take it out of my car. I wonder if it’s expired.

To celebrate my big event, I invited 70 people from all over the U.S. hoping that someone from afar would surprise me with a visit and a substantial donation to my nonprofit organization, but no luck.

Instead, I received much more: respect, honor, and renewed friendship from 40 people closer to home and 20 more via phone calls, cards, gifts, and e-mails. I felt like a tsunami of love poured over me.

The best part about aging is being comfortable in one’s own skin—a condition some never achieve, making them difficult to endure. It’s looking into the trusty mirror, suppressing a gasp, and thoughtfully pondering, I wonder how many Botox treatments I’d need to spackle these cracks.

Beyond the weathered skin is where comfort lies…except on fat-stomach days. I used to have a plump body five days a month. The numbers have transposed: flat-stomach days, five; fat, 25. On those glorious five days, I try to be deeply comfortable, but the critic inside my head won’t shut up.

Mind, body, spirit.

My mind is still sharper than my tongue. I remember more than what would be expected if I worked as a firefighter, waitperson, or CIA agent. That’s why I’m not married. If I could forget some things, forgiveness would be so much easier. “Sure, I forgive you. What’s your name again?” I’ve tried to be more like Jesus and Gandhi, but I’ve only received the persecution.

True under-the-skin comfort comes through spirits. After drinking enough of them, you’re at ease. Okay, I mean spirit. Being comfortable in your own skin is deeply understanding and accepting who you are, continually getting better, living honestly, honestly living, and embracing yourself when no one else will.

Most of my friends make my life easier. They’re stable, fun, have no pretenses, and live authentically. Others move easily around them, because they love and respect themselves first. They are my role models. One of my best role models is my 15-year-old daughter—the best gift a mom could ever receive.

I am blessed…and I didn’t even have to sneeze. Thank goodness, because I forgot to put on my diapers.

copyright © 2008 by Auntie Eartha. All rights reserved.

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