Getting Older and Getting Born


Sana_Set09_LeoChaves_032 (Photo credit: LeoChaves)

Turned another year over. Forty one now. Sometimes I already feel like there is a toe tag on me. Other times I ride the consciousness of now and innocence, as if I have forever to do whatever it is I am living for. As if fear did not pulse around me, as if life held no shame, then I carry my 41 years as lightly as a daughter spatters kissies over her mother’s arms.

Getting older is all the hype now. I was not alive 100 years ago but I wonder if 40 was the “new sexy” then. Gwyneth Paltrow is lovely. Me and Gwyneth. We have so much in common.

Huffington Post featured 30 Celebs Who Are Aging Gracefully. Tina Turner, Sting, Sigourney Weaver, the list is full of real people sharing our life-space. Remember Working Girl? Boom.

I look at my parents, friends, patients, myself, strangers on the street and stories that symbolize a person’s life lived. I look and I think of someone who climbs Everest. I think of frostbite. I think of a long long journey. I think of death.

The day before my birthday, the excitement made waiting too much to endure. A small chocolate bar, a handmade card with misspelled words and two tightly folded dollar bills disregarded the calendar date. Neatly arranged on my night table, I was told by their giggling toe-toe hopping agents, “Happy Birthday tomorrow, Mommy! I’m so glad you were born!”

And I was born again. Just like that. Love labor.

Some women have birth the way it is supposed to happen and others suffer. After my third child, my OB-Gyn, I love that woman, told me with nothing more than fatigue and honesty, “Sana, you should probably stop at three. Pregnancy and delivery is just not easy for you.” My pregnancies and deliveries were not that easy for her either.

Our rebirths also come easy and come hard. We almost die. We cruise through as if we were made for it. “She was made to have babies!” (Dodge the loogie I cannot help but hurl. Damn those women with baby-making bodies!)

I know we think things like this about people without brain illness, (if they even exists.) Maybe we think they do not have the suffering we do. Maybe we think we have it worse. We think at least we are misunderstood, when we hear,

“Get over it!”

“Just calm down!”

“Would you relax?!”

Breath. Yummy. How we love that. The list of these is longer than the path up Everest. And so helpful. Who has actually calmed down when told? Notice the exclamation points. Exclamation points symbolize emotion, in case the mountaineering porters saying the helpful emotion-directives did not know.

During our long long or short journeys we get to be born once, twice, forty-one, or the last time, because of Love. We do not get a Love that is measurable liquid or linear, like Time. Love is not healthy or unhealthy. It does not curl into our DNA, and is not dispensed by privilege. Nor a jury of Sherpas. Calm down.

Love is. Love is, and Love offers us a newness over and over and over and over because.

We have different birthing experiences, but I am glad you were born. You are loved.

Self-Care Tip:  Allow Love to bring you new beginnings.

Questions:  How has birthing gone for you?  What have been some of the new beginnings you knew Love brought you.  Please tell us your story.

21 thoughts on “Getting Older and Getting Born

  1. Lovely post!….It’s full of sweetness and wisdom! Thanks from one of your readers who is often too busy to comment, but who enjoys this blog. Happy belated birthday. I think you might enjoy the poem that is my most recent blog post. If you have time to take a peek (and a listen) you will find it at

  2. I just wrote my, as usual, long response to this and then lost half of it. Re-wrote what I lost and posted it and was told there was an error and it couldn’t be posted. I give up. Happy birthday. I guess the rest just wasn’t important.

    • What hurts here is that this post is – was – so important for me this past week. I lost one of my closest high school friends on Tuesday. Yes, she had been fighting cancer but she was winning…and she died of a massive heart attack. I’ve lost friends but this is the first high school friend and I’ve been remembering when we were 18 and so excited about life and so looking forward to the many, many years we had ahead. And we have had many, many years. She was 72. I am, too. She spent the last four years with her daughter and her granddaughters. She was happy. And she went quickly. And I looked at my husband beside me and wondered when one of us would lose the other; how soon? how many years left? how quickly? And I have to admit that I have had many mini-panic attacks this last week. But this last week I attended an amazing convention with almost 200 colored pencil artists, most of whom are hugely talented, and, as we watched several of our companions win large amounts of money for the work they entered in the national convention art exhibition, I was told that I should enter something next year in Dayton. I could win, they said!! At 72 my art life is just beginning!! AT 41, Sana, your life still has so much to offer; so much to give; so much love to receive from three giggly kids who couldn’t wait an extra day to celebrate you!! I don’t feel 72, I feel 18. I feel 41. It doesn’t matter. Margo fought cancer and she was sure she’d win. She didn’t but she had time to do what she wanted to do with her life and she did it well. I fought brain illness and, now, I am sure I’m winning….and I have something to strive for – along with winning – as I search my photos for a picture I can draw with colored pencil and at least enter the competition – NEXT YEAR!! – when I’m 73!!! I don’t have to be awarded a thing. I don’t even have to have my picture on the wall at convention. I just have to believe that I CAN!! I know I need a paragraph here but I don’t trust my computer, so Happy Birthday, dear Sana, and know that you are wonderful and know that, for all of the pain and difficulty you had in giving birth, you are so loved by three kids who will make you happy for the rest of your life. Margo was lucky enough to have one and two grandkids. I’m so happy that her life was fulfilled, no matter how old she was. We are what we make of ourselves no matter what our circumstances are and how old we are. God bless you and your family as you begin your 41st year. May you have many, many more and may your kids always be so excited about their Mom that they need to celebrate her at day early!

      • Sorry. The next Colored Pencil Society of America convention will be held in DaytonA. Left the A off, which makes it much farther from the beautiful ocean beaches the Florida chapters promised us last week!!

      • dear nancy, thank u so much. your thoughts, words, energy has blessed me this last week.
        i know r grieving and send mine and ours, here at friendtoyourself, back to u.
        i really liked how you blurred the lines between ages in your comment, “feel 72, I feel 18. I feel 41.” pithy. keep on.

  3. My reborn experience has been trying to let go of things. No allowing anxiety to get the best of me. Living in the present and focusing on the here and now.

      • I don’t know why I didn’t remember. I knew it for several days in advance and Friday morning too. Then after gym at Starbucks the call comes. Where my mind went today I have no explanation. A stunning hurt ray came out of the phone into my brain. Kept thinking why did this happen? Feeling a little low the last few days and this was the topper. Just felt sad all day that I did not show up. It is just not done not to show up. Very rude and disrespectful. Please know I value your time and care. 🙁

  4. I am reborn each day when I wake up, because I am a new person, changed by the day before in large and small ways. I feel blessed to be alive 48.75 years old and getting younger every day. :~) Your writing is beautiful, uplifting and fun to read. Thank you for sharing your thought with us. And thank you for stopping by my blog, liking it enough to share it on your page and putting the link back to my site. Gratitude Dance. Namaste’

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