To me that is just a number. I'm not quite sure how I got to 52? Wasn't I just 30? I'm not quite sure where the years have gone.
Of course, I now know that my life has been divided into three parts:
- the first 20 or so years of my life--as a child, growing up, and going to college.
- the next 30+ years of my life--married to my best friend and love of my life raising our family and making a home.
- and now the next chapter--still to be defined.
I took the day off of work today. I wanted it to be a day to do whatever I wanted to--to go someplace, to stay home, to be open to whatever possibilities moved me at the moment.
I did start my day with a hair appointment. The practical side of me using my time off productively. I also had some chores around the house that I wanted to get done (can't waste available time and good weather).
But I also took some time just to relax. I went to the Quabbin, a place Ed and I used to visit often. It was a cool, fall day and it was peaceful. The beauty of the fall leaves as they are beginning to turn. The cool, crisp autumn air. The eagle that soars overhead.
I found it was nice just to slow down and enjoy the moment. There weren't many people there and I had the Observation tower to myself (a rare occurrence).
I made a new friend while there. He was enjoying the day as well, simply taking a walk. He lost his wife 4 years ago. Another widow friend. Is there a beacon that attracts us to each other? We talked for a while and exchanged phone numbers and email addresses. Small world.
The rest of my birthday was doing some work around the house. I also picked up two bouquets of flowers. Ed always gave me flowers for my birthday--some at work and some at home. The red roses I picked up today represent his love for me. The fall arrangement is similar to the many he gave me over the years when I told him to stop wasting money on roses that would not last. Our love lasted though. And the tradition he had of spoiling me I will continue by spoiling myself.
My favorite dinner of acorn squash is in the oven and the single serving of cake and ice cream is waiting as my evening dessert. The shoes I ordered for myself won't arrive until later this week (poor planning on my part). But they are my gift to myself.
For although Ed made me happy for more than half of my life and he made me feel special not only on my birthday but everyday, I can either wallow in my grief missing that or learn from it and continue these traditions. How blessed I was to have him make me happy for so many years. Now I need to learn to bring happiness into my life myself.
As I look back over my 52 birthdays, I realize there were only 3 when I was "alone". My first year in college and these last two birthdays since Ed passed.
I have received many cards and wishes from friends and family. I am loved and I am blessed. And for that I am grateful. It has been a good day and I'm learning how to care for myself.
Happy Birthday to Me!
|Bluebirds in my yard checking out the bird house.|
|The bluebirds enjoying the bird bath. There were about a half dozen of them.|
|Quabbin Reservoir - Enfield Lookout|
|Quabbin Reservoir - You can see the center of Belchertown in the distance (if you look close/zoom in).|