I am very happy with the fact that most people can’t tell my age correctly. Most are off by at least ten years and often fifteen. Especially when they might realize that my hair is not colored and I’ve had no surgical adjustments.
I have put much effort into keeping myself healthy especially in the last ten years. I see it as a desire for extended vitality. I want to be as active as I am now in thirty years or more.
I will also acknowledge that I had a great head start from my parents especially my father who is celebrating his ninetieth birthday this year! My mom also never looked her age. Both have been pioneers and have shown me the way to live life as celebration and to love with an open heart.
Though, one of the hard facts is that my mom passed five months after her sixtieth birthday, now more than twenty years ago. I miss her everyday and think of her especially when I hear Somewhere Over the Rainbow – the song she would sing to me and my sisters at bedtime with her absolutely angelic soprano voice. She lit my life with joy and stood by me when times were tough. She showed me how to be a woman honest to her feelings and able to provide family and friends love and support without giving up self.
Leap Day is exactly five months and a day passed my sixtieth. And for over a year now I have been struggling. Struggling because hard stuff has been happening in my life which has been tough to figure out. Struggling because I am alone and find it hard to soothe and comfort myself when the ugly head of mortality seems to seek me out and make taunting faces at me. Struggling because … well because while I don’t believe that my path is the same as my mom’s, nonetheless the existence of the possibility challenges my sense of balance and calm.
Next Saturday is February 29. Leap Day. The day I leap beyond into the open horizon of my life. If I don’t make it, this Cheryl won’t know.
Yet, this Cheryl is filled with hope and desire and joy for this amazing life gifted to her by amazing parents. I am not done, and I will always meet the dark night in a blaze of glory lit from within by the joy of my heart and the deep love I feel for all.
I’m still trying to figure out what to do next Saturday. If the weather’s good probably out to the coast for a long beach walk regardless of the weather. If you want to join me, let me know.
Laugh. Learn. Love. Be. Become. Always.