June 29, 2019

Today I turn 50. It's such a milestone birthday, one where women are often fighting our own bodies in so many ways. Menopause is a bitch... just sayin...

So much has happened in my life since I turned 40. The great big, unthinkable sorrow of losing Shannon. The constant worry in the aftermath about whether we'd ever be happy again. (We are.) Finding the equilibrium of a new normal. My own teeny tiny cancer trip with DCIS breast cancer, lumpectomy and radiation.

I have to admit, this wasn't my healthiest decade! This body has given up some breast tissue, three teeth, two ovaries and a uterus, but it still works. I can play tennis, golf and volleyball. I lift weights with other "powerful women". And I laugh. I laugh with each and every group of my friends. My tennis people, my mom squad, the volleyball ladies, my work friends. We all laugh. Sure, we cry when necessary. And we talk a lot. But mostly, we laugh.

I feel so lucky to be surround by women who hope for the best for each other. Life is hard enough. Let's not beat each other down, but lift each other up. That's what the women in my life do for each other, and for that, I am grateful.

My life is full of amazing people. Beautiful souls, powerhouses of determination, love and compassion who show me that 50 (and 60 and 70) can be fabulous. I hope that the 30 and 40 somethings in my life can look to me for that same kind of example.

And so, the big birthday is here. I will celebrate tonight with family and friends. Men and women from each part of my world. How lucky am I to have work friends and tennis friends and mom friends? Each year is a gift. Sure, I'm not as fast or fit as I once was. My skin shows the lines and marks of time. My bones ache more than they used to and hot flashes are no fun. But more good stuff is ahead. So let's get to it.