It is My Birthday.
I Am Still Here.
Today is my birthday and I am happy to be alive. I haven’t always been happy to be alive, particularly on my birthday.
In fact, the last two birthdays I was super depressed and dreaded the fact that my birthday existed at all. I did a lot of crying out of a sort of pain and emptiness.
But, I’ve been working on filling myself back up; today I cried for a moment too, not out of pain but because of all the beauty in this world.
As I reflect back on my 34 years on this planet I am in awe that I have made it this far.
And more than awe I am in a deep state of gratitude for all that I have and all that I’ve shared with so many amazing people on this planet.
I recently matched with this Dude-Bro-PUA(pick-up artist)-Troll on Tinder who ended up calling me all sorts of hateful names when I called him out on his behavior. One name he called me was “old,” which is funny on all sorts of levels. One, he was like 2 years younger than me. Two, I’m only 34. People live to like over a hundred these days. 34 is nothing in the grand scheme of what we experience as time.
Of course, because my birthday was coming up, that particular adjective stuck with me more than the others. There is truth in it too. There is a bit of pain in it as well. Yes, I am old. I am older than I was yesterday even. Yet, if I wasn’t this old I may not be as wise as my former self who would have probably hate-fucked that guy just to “teach him a lesson.”
Yeah, no, I am all of my former selves and also none of them.
I believe it was Sandra Cisneros who wrote in House of Mango Street (though I could be wrong because I couldn’t find it), “When you turn five you are also still four and three and two and one.”
Something like that.
I feel like we often don’t look at it that way. For example, I may be 34 but there could be times when the five-year-old me comes out or the 21 year old etc etc.
Because we are a collection of our experiences and yet we are also not. They shape us but they do not make us. We make ourselves. There is a core to us all, an essence if you will. A lot of our experiences shade that essence and then we try to hide the core of who we are to avoid pain. Yet, that avoidance is pain. The pain is still there. The hiding, the mask, causes more suffering than the pain. Better to just face the pain and return to the lightness of your being–if you will.
There is also pain in the realization that each moment we live we are one breath closer to death. Yet, this is only for people who subscribe to the linear version of time. All of those moments of my life and your life still exist somewhere in time. Death is just another unfolding of our experience on earth. The earth will continue on and so will the essence of who we are.
Who knows for certain.
In any event, my life so far has been filled with some of the most amazing people on this planet and if you’re reading this you are probably one of them, so thank you for being you. Even if I don’t like you, thank you because it’s just a reflection of something I don’t like about myself — and all I can do is grow from that discomfort.
So yeah, I’m old.
Fuck yes. It feels good to get old. To have all of this time to explore
Cheers to being old.
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