Tomorrow, I turn the big 5-0.
I am more excited to celebrate this birthday than probably any other.
At 50, I have experienced the most incredible things. I’ve felt love so deep that I couldn’t breathe, and pain so excrutiating that I wanted to die. I’ve brought life into this world, and I’ve held the hand of someone slipping away. I’ve danced with my husband in the kitchen while making tacos and drinking boxed wine, and I’ve dined at the French Laundry with good friends. I’ve designed costumes for God knows how many children’s plays, and sat in the living room of Carnie Wilson while working on her Red Carpet gown. I’ve gotten to experience relationships so deep that those people become carved in your soul, and so shallow that they leave you wondering what happened. I’ve walked the runways in London and New York, and I’ve dressed senior citizens and cancer survivors to have their moment on the runway. I’ve had the opportunity to see people who live in the poorest conditions, be generous and joy-filled, and have had people who seemingly had everything confide how empty their lives feel. Every experience, mistake, success, interaction and relationship has become a part of me. I am wiser, I am stronger, I am smarter, I am happier than I have ever been before.
I know there are those that dread becoming older. They worry that the physical changes that are part of the process somehow make them less than. I say phooey. I may not be the weight I was in college, I have lines in places that once were smooth, and I have a little UADD, (underarm dingle dangle), but, I would not trade this time in my life for anything. At fifty, we have the wisdom, experience, and courage to squeeze every good drop out of this life.
My birthday wish for you is, as you approach each decade, I hope you find time to reflect on how far you’ve come, and how every experience has helped to create who you are today.