Gifts of Birthdays Past

*** Originally planned for Monday, May 22, 2023. A technology glitch lost the blog, and I am reconstructing it after the fact. The topic came to me after a friend, Jay Miralles, wished me Happy Birthday and told me to write something special. It is nothing like the one lost.***

Yesterday, May 22, 2023, was my 71st birthday. My mind doesn’t feel that old, but my body does.

It’s from the disability, which was determined when I was 48 years old. I went on early Social Security/Medicare at the ripe old age of 50. It was depressing as hell. I was angry.

I met the Babe less than six months after I had a very invasive surgery to remove a tumor from my spinal column in 1995. It was crushing my spinal cord, and would have paralyzed me if left to continue growing. The spine had much less support and developed a 27 degree curve of scoliosis. It is most likely much more than that now. My uan neducated guess is well over 40 degrees by now.

The Babe is the one who first mentioned he thought I should go on disability because, “I didn’t have to work anymore.” My daily pain was on the rise every day; my relief was scant, even with pain pills. They did not help much after a while. I quit taking them. When I told the doctor I needed to stop working, it was the year 2000, five years after surgery. I’d been married a little over a year. The doctor told me, “He’s surprised I made it so long.” Wow. Gift of my 48th birthday.

In that huge change in my life is one of the Gifts of Birthdays Past – Someone to celebrate my special day with. He’s my partner in eating ice cream. Today, we met for iced cream, at Freezing Thai Rolled Ice Cream. It was so special!

After the bust of a birthday I had Monday, with Mom in the ER for several hours, this was a bonus surprise after lunch with the babe Tuesday. Such unexpected fun things are out there, all waiting to be discovered.

I’ve been fortunate to have the Babe, who is a very understanding man about a lot of things. My disability is the most important thing I needed understanding about. The other is/was the walls around my heart. He identified them, their reasons, and dismantled them. I learned to trust, that love doesn’t hurt, and how to stand up for myself like never before. Color me grateful.

We’ve built not only a life together, with the tangible things like homes, vehicles, etc. We’ve built a family together, with our kids, grandkids, and especially each other, and extended family. We are each other’s anchor. We’re each other’s best friend. We learn from each other. All gifts that are given to both of us, increasing with each birthday, Christmas, whatever holiday you want to name.

This is certainly not written as well as my piece that was lost in cyberspace. The point was to look back on some of the things I saw as gifts, and know these things are given to us on a daily basis. We are are all rich in gifts from the universe, or from our God. It’s up to us to be grateful for them and to use them well.

What do you see as your birthday gifts from your God, the universe, and how are you using them? Hopefully you recognize them, and know how to use them.

I hope you have a great Wednesday. Today is the Babe’s birthday. He wants no fuss, but we will (finally) have cake. The corners are mine. See you tomorrow.

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