So, tomorrow is my birthday, and no I'm not going to tell you how old I am. Age has no meaning, right? Its only a number…like the number on the bathroom scale. Actually, my son the mathemetician would take issue with the phrase "only a number" because his brain dwells in the land of numbers all the time.
Speaking of my son, yesterday he appeared at my house after I'd been alone working all day. I had that vaguely wild-eyed, messy-haired look that one gets when one has been writing for hours. I looked up at him and realized he had the same look.
He proceeded to tell me how he'd been sitting in his apartment with the shades drawn against the heat, reading obscure math texts (my description, not his). And now he felt strangely ill at ease in the world and uncomfortable with human contact.
I said, "Welcome to my world." I feel like that all the time. I really have to get out more. Actually, I get out plenty on nights and weekends. But I'm very accustomed to spending long hours alone at home with no human contact.
Along those lines, I'm taking myself out to coffee for my birthday tomorrow morning. I might even have a Starbucks Frappucino, one of my most favorite things in the world, but something I haven't indulged in since last winter when I gave up sugar.
In some cultures, it is traditional to look back upon your year birthday to birthday. Here in the states we're more apt to look at things from an old year/new year perspective. But I've always enjoyed looking back to my past birthday and pondering what happened over the previous 12 months. The first six months of this year were quite sedate and business as usual. But starting on January 1st, hoo boy, things got wild. My Mom fell and was hospitalized and that began the long, slow process that led to her death. My daughter got married–with three weeks notice–and has had to cope with her husband being sent to Kuwait. And my sister and I (and our families) spent every waking moment cleaning out Mom's house and handling the sale.
All of this has got me thinking (I wouldn't be worth my salt as a writer if events such as these didn't get me thinking). I don't know where these thoughts are going to lead yet. Because one thing I've learned over the past year is that we really don't know anything about where we're going–even though we like to think we do. But I do know that I'm feeling a renewed commitment to my writing, a fresh vow to present only myself and all of me on the page, and a burning desire to be master of my own destiny.
So I hope this birthday year is going to be not only an interesting one, but a fun and productive one.
Stay tuned. I'll keep you posted about whatever happens.