Today I turn 59. I don’t feel remotely close to that. My spirit feels as if I am somewhere still in my twenties and not with 60 just around the corner. There is another part of me though that feels closer to death than I have ever felt before. This past year I have come into contact with the fact that I am mortal, that I am not going to live forever and that in fact, I am going to die. And I am becoming okay with that.
A couple of months ago I felt a sharp pain in my chest that lasted for several minutes. It happened again the following day while I was driving and I considered going to the emergency room. I chose not to and when I got home I shared the experiences with Neil fearing that he would get nervous and concerned. He didn’t which surprised me. He knew I had just swam and assured me my heart was fine if I could swim laps without being winded.
As we were talking and out of the blue I said, “I want to live.” It came out forcefully and unquestioningly certain. I have no idea where it came from. I didn’t intend to say it and I wasn’t talking about anything related to that. It just poured out. We looked at each other and knew what had happened. Somewhere deep inside my self I came into contact with a part of me that was claiming life. I was forced to hear my own desire to truly live. In that moment I chose to inhabit my life. I heard my self finally say yes to my life.
Since then I have been thriving. Things are making sense to me in ways they haven’t made sense before. I understand my priorities and am clearer on what is truly important for me. And, most importantly I believe I am making a difference in the lives of others in a way I have not before. My work and personal relationships are clearer, less encumbered by insecurity and fear. I am more and more saying what I mean and meaning what I say and spending much less time trying to be or act like someone I am not.
Like a line in one of May Sarton’s poem, I am becoming my self. It has taken time, many years, 60 years. I have worn other people’s faces and run mad. And now, today on this day, I stand in my knowing and being and am alive to the life I was born to live. My own.
Happy birth day to this day and to all that is wanting to become in you. May you live the life you were born to live and allow what wants to be born in you to take root and grow. This day is your day, the day the sun will rise to light your way and warm your heart. Listen, see, touch what is alive in you and bring those gifts to the world. Allow your self to live fully your own life. If you can, don’t wait 59 years. Do it today and join me in sharing our truth with each other.