Today is a day unlike the other 364 days (and every four years, 365 days), as today is the 47th anniversary of an important day in my life. Perhaps the only important day in my life. On this date 47 years ago, it became possible for me to do, well, everything, which is not the same as everything well. I became a human being at 6:37 p.m. (just in time for dinner) on November 18, 1968. Thank you, mom.
Age is a statistic, and mine are these (for your own numbers, feel free to play with the age calculator that I linked to): As of today, I have been here for 17,167 days (counting today), which is also more than 412,000 hours and approximately 370,801,080 breaths, and 1,779,845,184 heart beats since I was born.
Have I made each one of these days, breaths, and heartbeats count? Have I lived “each day as if it was my last?” You bet I haven’t. (Shakes head vigorously.) Of course the heck not.
I spent at least 12,000 of my days either anxiously waiting for a paycheck, anxiously awaiting the return of a graded term paper, or avoiding the phone. Ah, well. I also do not dance like no one is looking, I do not sing in the shower, and my mattresses always have those tags on them.
For too much of my life, I lived like everyone was watching, and no sanity can develop next to that.
I reside somewhere in the middle of the middle of my stroll through life. (I knew a woman in her 90s who used to tell people, “I am 93 … and a half!”) Either I have already seen more sunrises than I have yet to see in this life, or I have not even seen half of the sunrises yet to come in this life. (I get up late, anyway, so I have missed at least 16,000 of those sunrises. Or more: Have I been awake for even a thousand sunrises in person?)
I still possess a lot of my boyish lack of charm and wisdom, yet I am adding middle-aged foolishness to it. Forty-seven is a complicated age. They all are.
And Google, that ever-more intrusively helpful and pushily cheerful aide to the doing of everything, greeted me this morning with the above homepage. I no longer know if I am 47 because I am 47, or if I am 47 because Google
knew reminded me that it is my birthday.
Please, enjoy some ice cream cake, because everyone’s birthday deserves some ice cream. Thank you, mom. Thank you, dad. Thank you, Michelle (my sister). And thanks, Jen. Every day is a birthday now that you’re in my world.
The WordPress Daily Prompt for November 18 asks, “Tell us about the experience of being outside, looking in—however you’d like to interpret that.”
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