Last Saturday, I turned 25. I know it isn’t such an important milestone as 16, 18, or 30. I also didn’t grow up celebrating birthdays or milestones until I lived at the orphanage in the Philippines. It wasn’t a big deal then…
I still celebrated my birthday, but I decided to do it alone. The week prior, I had gone down to Denver for my sister’s birthday. Our family decided to celebrate our birthdays together because I wasn’t going to be home anyway for mine. I enjoyed every minute of it.
Last Saturday wasn’t the first birthday I celebrated on my own. Surprise! Surprise! (insert sarcasm). During my childhood prior to the orphanage, I only remembered one time when my birthday was acknowledged. It was also the time when my birth parents argued which exact day it was. My birth mother said the 14th while my birth father insisted it was on the 15th. Without question, you probably guessed right who won that argument.
As lonely as it sounds, I actually had a blast celebrating on my own. I rarely go out and make time for myself. I’m always running somewhere so I was glad I decided on it.
So that morning, I got up, I opened the blinds to my bedroom window and saw powder of snow lightly covering the grass. I did a quiet little girl scream. I was even more excited that it had snowed (even just for a little bit). I remember thinking it must’ve been a gift from God to me. In addition to that, I had a tattoo appointment that day I had scheduled two days before. Months ago, I contacted my tattoo artist about combining my brother’s art he drew on the wall and the Philippine sun I created, but I didn’t specify when I was getting it. I didn’t originally schedule it on my birthday because a friend and I planned on skydiving in Colorado which was cancelled due to weather condition. Summer would have been a better season…maybe?
During my appointment, my tattoo artist and I talked about many things; mostly of faith and religion. He knew why the tattoo meant so much to me. He knew what I believed in. We voiced our beliefs and disagreements, but not once did we argue. Our conversations were fair and respectful. I admired him for it. After confirming my birthday, he respectfully asked how old I was turning which I answered laughingly. By the end of the appointment, he wished me a happy birthday and then said something about my age. Sarcastically, I responded with,
“Yep, 25. Half way to my death.”
I wasn’t certain how he was going to take that joke knowing what I had gone through. He did laugh it off…or maybe pretended to (who knows). Before you say anything, please understand that I do have an idea of what the life expectancy is as of today. Don’t worry, it isn’t 50.
In all honesty, every day we wake up, pray, eat, and go to work should be a milestone in itself. Some babies don’t ever get to take their first breath after birth. Some children don’t make it to 10 years. Others don’t make it to 25…or live long enough to become grandparents.
You just never know when the Lord is going to take you home. Though, I know I shouldn’t have said that joke in respect to my loss, but there’s a little truth to it. I won’t ever know when God decides to end my time here on earth…like not knowing my brother would be taken from us early on in life.