March has arrived! Last March, I didn't give much thought to my age or my life or how many more birthdays I would have. I cannot deny that this year is a little different. I now see my birthday as it's own gift to me. When you have a battle with cancer, you can't help but be cognizant of your own mortality, and of the fact that life just is unpredictable and potentially short. I remember the first time I saw an American Cancer Society commercial where they called themselves "the official sponsor of birthdays". I got a bit teary eyed because I thought what a beautiful and frightning statement... That was long before I knew it applied to me.
This year, I turn 35. My mid-thirties! If things were different, I might have lamented that age. But now I embrace it. I am happy to be turning 35, because I am happy to be here to see it. I continue to pray that I beat this disease. Remember, that I have finished treatment, but I have not officially beaten this disease. I am certainly a survivor, but cancer is always a risk for me now. Moreso than for someone else. I still haven't had a scan since before the mastectomy. I am operating under the assumption that I am cancer free, but the reality is, I don't know that for sure. But then again, does anyone really know that about themselves? No, they don't (not to frighten anyone, it's just a fact).
The truth is, I have no idea what lies ahead. I could be here for another 50 years, or another 5. That's not for me to decide. That's in God's hands. I hope and pray that he goes for the bigger number, and in the meantime, I will do the best I can to be healthier so my body stays as strong as it can. It goes back to the whole concept of "I work like it's all up to me, and pray like it's all up to Him". That's about the best anyone can do, right?
I personally plan on celebrating every birthday I have coming. And I plan on being happy about getting older. I am grateful for that opportunity. Yes, my hair is grey. I am ok with that. Yes, I have a few laugh lines forming (although they are not as noticeable thanks to Mary Kay!) No, I cannot stay up as late as I used to or drink like I used to. Yes, I am closer to be eligible to live in an "active adult" community. But you know what? I am ok with all of it! Because I am happy to be here to enjoy getting older. I embrace it. It's life, and I am grateful to be living it!