I have a blog in process about our trip to New York, but I don't feel like working on that tonight. Tomorrow, July 19, is my birthday. I'll be 58 years old - a year older than my sister was when she died in 2007. It's a strange feeling to be the oldest now. I feel like an imposter. Like a little girl wearing her mother's big shoes. Oldest. The title doesn't fit me. It really still belongs to her.
I've been thinking about Judy and Mom a lot lately. Ginger and I saw the movie "Beginners" today. A man's father has died, so the son now has the father's dog. At one point, the son looks at the dog and says, "You miss him, don't you? So do I." It was all I could do not to bust out crying. I miss them both so much. I have a scar on my heart just like Harry Potter has a scar on his forehead. There are times when it hurts and nothing can ease the pain. I just have to feel it and acknowledge it, and let it work its way through.
I thought by now that I would know my place in this world. I thought I would have written a few best sellers, composed a world-renowned symphony. I thought I would be making the planet a better place to live or just give someone a better foothold in life. I'm sitting here now thinking that I haven't done crap. Of course, I know that's not true, but some days I feel the thought hanging over me like the moss on the trees in old New Orleans. It's like a burial shroud that I can't quite figure out how to take off.
This blog is over a year old now. I set out for it to be a place where I could hold myself accountable to lose weight and to write a book, neither of which has happened. I've been thinking about shutting the blog down. But if Judy were here, she would smack me e up the side of my head and tell me to snap out of it. She'd say that despite the depression and the biopsies and the constant medical tests, my life is pretty darn good. And she would be right.
REAL SIMPLE magazine is having an essay competition, the "Fourth Annual Life Lessons Essay Contest". I hold no hope of winning it, but I'm "saying" out loud in public here on this blog that I'm entering the contest. The essay is supposed to answer the question, "When did you first understand the meaning of love?" The word limit is 1500 words. I think I can do at least a 1000. Submissions have to be in by September 15.
Happy Birthday to me. If I don't start becoming the person I want to be now, then when can I? I learned with Judy and Mom that you never know when it's over, even when you've been fighting for years to stay alive.
If not now, when?
Wish me luck. I'll get that blog about our trip on here by the end of this week.