I am so excited for tomorrow! On June 1st a very special woman turns 90 years old. And tomorrow, a bunch of us are gathering to have a surprise birthday party for her!
My uncle is flying in from Alaska! My cousins are flying in on her birthday! Cousins, aunts, and uncles will be driving hours to come and celebrate this wonderful woman who has blessed our lives with love.
It is interesting to watch a woman age with grace and optimism. There is so much in our culture that points to age as something horrible, instead of something to be celebrated. I know people in their 40's who talk down about themselves because of their age. I know people in their 50's who talk like they are in their final days. I know people in their 60's who believe the end is near. I know people in their 70's who look at everything they no longer have and live in regret. And I know this 89 year old woman who sees each day and each moment as a blessing!
I've gotten to chat with her a bit more since she moved in with my parents. And just listening to her talk is inspiring. We were talking about her hip and she was just telling me how it was. It wasn't quite complaining, but it was obvious that she was frustrated. And she stopped herself. She just flat out stopped. And she said, "but I can walk." She looked up towards the heavens and said "thank you!".
Every life has bad stuff. Every life has good stuff. And if you want to know the secret to turning 90 years old and being happy . . . she is beyond happy, she is joyful! If you want to know the secret to a joyful, happy, and blessed life - then this woman has it. She is grateful. She is grateful for all the good in life. She knows the bad is there. She talks about it sometimes. But she never stays there. She never fixes herself on it. She always turns back to the good, and she feels blessed. And she is! And she blesses others.
Tonight I am thankful for a very, very special birthday party tomorrow! I can't wait! :)