Thursday, May 26, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me!

Birthday Card from Shayna - 5-26-09Image by BrianWestChest via FlickrThe day I used to dread has arrived.  Today I am 50 years old.  My parents look at me with shock.  "We have a 50 year old son?" they asked on my birthday card.  Yep.  I'm half a century old today. And I'm loving it.

It's hard to believe it was a decade ago that I turned 40.  That was miserable.  I didn't want to be 40.  But, a lot has changed in the last 10 years.  I've gotten to know myself a lot better.  I didn't really like the person I was at 40.  I like the guy I am at 50.  I do feel older and wiser.

I am blessed with the best family on the planet.  The girls keep asking me what I want for my birthday, as if any material thing could make me any happier.  I want nothing. I have a loving wife who is a partner to me, a teenage daughter rapidly transitioning into womanhood and a brave pre-teen who reminds me every single day of the simple joy of just being on the planet.  She's the only kid I've ever known who answers "Yep" when you say "You've got a pretty good life.  Don't you?"  We were told last week that Shayna has juvenile arthritis and since that time she's been through five hour doctors visits, surgery, injections, prescriptions and a host of other things she hasn't experienced before. But, yesterday after her surgery, we were talking and I said "Shayna, I don't think you were nervous.  You seemed a little excited about it.".  "Yes", she replied.  For Shayna, the procedure was another adventure.  She looks at things with a "I wonder what that would be like." attitude.

Reflecting back on the last 50 years, I think Ive done pretty well with my journey.  25 years ago I would never have imagined that at 50 I'd have such a wonderful family, be running my own business and have as fulfilling a life as I have.  I was greeted today with dozens of well-wishes on my Facebook page, most from people I've never met in real life.  But, people who are very special to me, none-the-less.  I was telling Kayla just a couple of days ago that I love talking about religion and politics.  For me, the only two topics worth talking about.  And, my Facebook friends give me the opportunity to do that on a daily basis with some pretty diverse people.

Today, Ty, Shayna and I had lunch together.  Tonight, we'll all go out to for dinner.  No big celebration.  But, there's nothing that could make today any more special than every day in my life already is.
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Crystal Lewis said...

Happy birthday to you! And many blessings. :)

Mike aka MonolithTMA said...

Happy Birthday, Brian.

I'm sorry to hear that Shayna has juvenile arthritis, but it sounds she has the right attitude, and her dad does too! You have a beautiful family!

okiedragon said...

I sailed thru many birthdays with no odd feelings except the one where my daughter turned 16 and was then the age of my mom when she ran off and got married. Then I knew how immature my own mother was and why she had not had a chance to grow up. I am still surprised at my survival. But in October my 60th birthday is to arrive - and this one - it bothers me.

I always love to read your posts - it seems we share a lot of the same values and I hope your daughter finds all that is needed to tolerate the athritis - my sister is just over 50 and has just found herself in with rhematoid attacking her body.