Sunday, June 5, 2016

50 Years Old - I've Been Blessed

As I woke this morning and opened my eyes, it hit me, today is my birthday - 50 years.  My first thoughts were of my mom.  I thought of me as her last baby - you know I was a blessing (smile) - as child number 6.  

My second thought was, I sure hope Al bought me a Dairy Queen frozen birthday cake...(he did!)

Then it hit, I can have coffee! 

26.  I gave up something I "loved" for a year, this was one of my "50 things to do before I'm 50."  I am enjoying a cup as I write this.

My 10th birthday:  I was invited to a sleep over at my friend Michelle Koplitz' house on June 4.  It was the last day of 4th grade.  Our school district had made changes in the districting of the grade schools and most of us weren't going to be in the same school the next year.  She had an end of year party and sleepover.  Her older brother, Brian and his friends told all of us girls "if you fall asleep, we are going to spray you with the garden hose."  We all were afraid and stayed up most of the night.   We played the morning away and I was so tired when I got home that I took a nap.  When I woke up, I ran into the kitchen and said "it's my birthday."  My mom said, "no, it isn't, you slept through your birthday." 

My 12th birthday:  I rode my own new 10 speed bike home from Carl's hardware.  I never had a new bike - always hand me downs.  It was probably the best birthday gift I received as a child.  My parents made a financial sacrifice for me to have such a nice bike.  It was tan with orange and yellow designs on it.  I can still see it - I loved it.  

My 18th birthday:  graduation from high school 

My 20th birthday:   my friends Kathy, Michelle and Kevin share a birthday with me.  Same year too.  We had planned a huge party and we had a competition to see who could get the most kisses.  We each were up to well over 100.  Kathy won - she is cute - everyone wanted to kiss her.  (smile)

My 21st birthday:  Al gave me my engagement ring.  

Sweet kisses, cards and homemade gifts from my girls fill the next years and decade.

My 40th birthday:  I spent at the Marshfield hospital.  For those that don't know, our daughter Anna had pediatric bladder cancer.  Anna had her port removed that day.  Best birthday gift to date!

My 49th birthday:  I spent at the Lima, Peru airport with our daughter, Justine...waiting to come was a long day/night of delayed flights.  In fact, that is where I came up with my 50 things to do before I'm 50 idea.  

So here I am today, my 50th birthday.  What a blessing it is to be this age.  I can't help but think of so many of my classmates and friends who didn't make it to their 50th.  My childhood friend Michelle Koplitz, in the story above, Lori Lucht, Matt Hahn, Marlin Sonnentag, Keith Schultz (read about it here:
Liz Foley, Chuck Allen, Jim Buska, Kathie Coates, Mark Falkowski, Steve Hansen, Chris Wendel, Jodi Brinkman and Lynn Sillars.  An image of each face came to me as I typed their name.  Some a younger image as our paths didn't cross since high school.  Others, like Jodi Brinkman Miller, an older face - as she and her girls were in our 4-H group.  

I am blessed, truly.  50 years is a gift!  Yes, it is a "big number" and a new decade of opportunity is before me.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin

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