I had no doubt I wanted to share this photo but I pondered the title. Yes it was my sixtieth birthday recently. I’d been very specific about my age when I was in hospital over the past year and they had me down at one stage as 60 – NO! I said, I’m not 60, I’m 59 – a big difference in my eyes, fiftties sounds younger, sixties sounds, well, old.
So here I am, 60 and proud of it. It’s a fact, it’s a number. But does it really mean anything? I opened a card just the other day from a fairly new friend who had never known my age. She couldn’t help adding a comment to the card that we had chatted, shared things and experiences together, laughed and more and she couldn’t believe I was the age I was and said it proves age is just a number. I don’t know her age. Somewhere between 30’s and 40’s. Does it matter? What matters is that we clicked, we get on well together, she always makes me smile. She said I was an inspiration but she inspires me. We inspire each other, what can be better than that – peer inspiration, the best.
After the difficult year I have had, I felt blessed to reach my 60th and even more so when a surprise birthday celebration was arranged by my close family. I had an inkling that we were going to do something, I thought a small family meal out together somewhere. I was urged to be ready in time and was frantically trying to get my Christmas gift of earrings from a friend through my ears that I had not done for nearly a year, didn’t even know if the holes would still be there. Success and then I made my way out the door to be greeted by a huge white limousine.
It was a wonderful surprise and I sat sipping a taster of Champagne as I floated in the car to our destination. It seemed unreal. In my mind I kept thinking I knew where we were going as we took different turnings and changed my guess as we went past. We ended up arriving at one of my favourite haunts some years back where we spent many happy times, a fairly local hotel where I had partied, had family brunches with Santa and enjoyed the therapeutic benefits of the health spa. After capturing our family group outside the limo, I ventured inside, not prepared for the surprises that moment by moment dawned on me. Some of my closest friends who had supported me so much during the past year were already seated in the lounge area, scattered so it took me a few minutes to take it in and tears of emotion and joy escaped my eyes. It couldn’t have been more perfect. How they had all managed to keep it from me at a time when we were wishing each other a Happy Christmas and not expecting to see each other until the New Year I do not know. I never suspected such a surprise. It brought a warm glow to my heart and I treasured every moment.
I have dwelt on this more than I intended and it is hard to express in words how I felt. I had not felt able to make plans myself because I had not long had my last treatment of chemotherapy and was still recovering, and somehow it being the last of the cycle made it more difficult though I should have been pleased. As I write this I have enjoyed a joyous Christmas at home and spent a couple of days away at a family party where most of my family were present and I met once again with the youngest member, just under a year old, my niece’s son.
I would never have imagined years ago that at age 60 (which always seemed so old when I recall my own parents reaching that age) that I would have a teenage daughter and be mid-way through a degree course at University. I have a wonderful family, dear friends and a range of interests that keep me happy most of the time. There are challenges ahead but there is so much to be thankful for. I am returning to study in January and this will bring its own pressures which will again mean that my blogging will no doubt go on hold again, but it is not something that I want to let go of. It is something that I want to return to again and again as there is something so special about it. I have tinkered with different aspects of social media. Each has its place, benefits and downfalls, but to me nothing gets near to what blogging can do. It opens up a whole new world and the opportunities are endless. Whenever I come on here I get lost in what I am doing and never feel that I have wasted my time. There is always something that draws me in to read more and I know that it is always there for me if I need it.