Forty Four

I love birthdays.  I love my birthday.  I always have, even though it is only 2 days before Christmas.  It feels like I have a 3 day holiday, and I never had to go to school on my birthday.

This year, “to save me from tears” (that’s a nod to my 4 year old, who has now heard “Last Christmas” so often that he sings it out randomly), well, this year I have some tears.  For one thing, I have been doing some math and realized…I am the same age my in-laws were when I married their son!!!  WHAT????

So that kind of hit me like a ton of bricks.  Then there’s the whole middle age thing.  Life expectancy is around 80 or so for us Gen Xers, I think; I am over middle age, at this point.  I most certainly do not FEEL middle aged, however that feels, which I certainly wouldn’t know.

I have classmates who have grandchildren the age of my children (or close to it).  WHAT????  I get asked at least once a month if my kids are my grandkids.  WHAT????? (said in my best Minion voice, you know you hear it too).

Most of all, though, this will be a birthday without my dad here.  I told my mom I couldn’t remember the last time I went out to eat with him, but I do…my last birthday, last year.  He was mostly listening, didn’t get the conversation, but he was there.  He gave me some money, if I remember correctly.  He sat across from me.  I am pretty sure he did nothing overtly embarrassing that day (trust me, there is a reason we all stopped eating out with him).

I will be thinking of him Tuesday. I think of him all the time.  And that leads me to those who are living this Christmas without their loved ones.  There are a few in particular, a wife without a husband and her children without their dad, and  a mom/dad, brothers, grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins and friends, without their daughter/sister/friend.  My heart aches for them.  I don’t even have the words to express my sorrow for how this Christmas will be for them.

But I do know this: Job lost everything.  EVERYTHING. Read this book of the Bible.  He lost his daughters and sons.  He lost his livestock.  He lost his wealth.  (He didn’t lose the wife who told him to curse God and die, wonder what was up with that?)

In Job 13:15 he says “Though He slay me, yet I will hope in Him…”

I want that.  That sense of whatever happens, happens and I can deal with it.  Say that with me:

THOUGH HE SLAY ME, YET I WILL HOPE IN HIM.

He hasn’t slayed me yet, but I know that when He does, He will get me through it and I will do my best to hope in Him.

Bring it, Forty Four.  I can take it!

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3 thoughts on “Forty Four

  1. Tina, you are young compared to me. I turned 60 last July. It was on a Sunday and I was so depressed I didn’t even go to church. My mother died at age 89 but my father was 58 when he died. I have half brothers and sisters who have died in their 50’s and in their 70’s. My maternal grandfather lived to be 93 and my paternal grandfather was in his 70’s but my paternal grandmother was in her 40’s or 50’s. I can’t remember which. I don’t know what my life expectancy will be. I want to leave some kind of legacy for my family. My mother left her quilts she made. This morning I put the poinsettia quilt she made for me on my bed and I thought of her and all the love she put into that quilt for me. When I die Bryan and Jessica will get that quilt along with all the other quilts. Then their children will inherit it and so on and so forth. Along with the quilts, they will also inherit the stories about my mother. She will be remembered for generations to come. That’s what I want. That is one reason I am writing a book. It may or may not be published but it will be there for my family to read and pass on. They will always know that I love reading and books, that I was an educator who loved children. I am also writing my life story for Bryan to read after I’m gone. I wished my mother had done that. That is something you might want to do for your children. Tim and I are at the stage in our lives in which we are thinking about arranging our funerals. One thing I am requesting at my funeral is that it start 15 minutes late. I am always late for everything so I might as well be late for my own funeral. Isn’t this morbid to be thinking about funerals? That’s where I am at right now. I hope I live long enough to see and enjoy grandchildren. I don’t like aging and seeing wrinkles where yesterday there were none. I don’t like being stiff and in pain. I can’t get down on the floor like I use to. I can’t run anymore. They say we’re in the golden years but I don’t see what is so golden about it. I enjoy being home so retirement is good and I will be glad when Tim can retire. He is also experiencing the same aches and pains I am. Now don’t you feel better about being 44? I would trade places with you anytime. You have 3 precious children to raise. So God Bless You and your family. Sorry to hear about your Dad. It’s awful what that devastating disease can do to such brilliant people.

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