It’s coming and I can’t stop it.
I feel the nervous anticipation already building in the pit of my stomach. The butterflies. The knots. My life about to enter a new, alternate reality and I can’t do anything to stop it.
I’ll probably open the mailbox when I get home tomorrow night and find my first piece of collateral from the AARP.
Tomorrow is the BIG 5-0. (I’ve always had a thing for Alex O’Laughlin.) The timing is bad. It’s my last chemo day of the latest round, which is a helluva way to mark the passing of a half-century of life. No pity parties, please. That’s just the way it is.
So assuming they release me, which they should because I’ve been doing really, really well lately, (still having PLENTY of sex, so I’d call that really, really well), it’s just going to be a quiet night at home with hubby and me all cuddled on the couch watching “Blue Jasmine.”
Oh stop your snickering. Yes, that’s what I call a romantic way to celebrate my birthday.
I stopped celebrating birthdays a long, long time ago. It’s kind of a joke in our family that Mom finds some excuse to disappear for the day while Dad makes a HUGE deal of every birthday. Some cancer survivors love celebrating their birthdays as a sign that they’ve beaten the disease for one more year. For me, though, it’s a countdown to the inevitable exhaustion of my life. Instead, I prefer to celebrate my birthday quietly, in my husband’s arms, thanking God for another day of feeling the warmth of an soul-welding embrace I never want to lose.
Of course I can’t completely dodge the “Big 5-0” (even if Alex O’Laughlin won’t be coming by for a visit.) (Getting the hint yet, Alex O’Laughlin? Just sayin’.) So my family will throw some kind of crazy, blowout, not-so-secret party this weekend and I’ll endure it and I’ll smile, and mingle, and be oh-so-fabulously witty and chatty and then I’ll disappear at the end of the night and curl up into a fetal position in the bedroom and wait for my husband to come by, huddle around me, and tell me I don’t have to go through it ever again. Once 5-0, never again 5-0. Thank God. A blip in time. A moment of torturous passing I will never again endure.
Hubby has plans to celebrate the way I really want to celebrate. A trip to Austria some time next month after my ever-looming tether to the hospital has been severed. Vienna. Salzburg. Just the two of us disappearing for a week to the land of Maria and those singing (highly fictionalized) Von Trapps. That’s my idea of fun. For as bitchy and as horny and as crazy as I can be, and for all the headaches I give my boy every day of the week, I wish I could spend every minute of life with him and only him. And my baby girls. I’d take the girls on the trip, really I would, but they’d get in the way of the sex and – sorry girls – I’d rather be having sex with your dad in Austria than hang with you beauties.
So that’s it. Less than 24 hours from now I’ll be officially ancient. I won’t be able to stop the inevitable march of time, but I will draw one more breath on one more beautiful day of life. And with my first breath tomorrow, I’ll thank God for all the people who have taught me what love is really all about.
Survive. Thrive. Be alive, my beauteous bitches.