I’ll be turning 26 on Friday. I am not to the point where I dismiss my birthday yet but am at the age where it sneaks up on me and I anticipate it less. I ran out of big, age-related privilege milestones last year when I became old enough to rent a car (not to say that is anything epic to celebrate). Now birthdays creep further and further away from, Wooo! Now I can vote. Now I can drink. Etc. Now birthdays simply signify a general passing of time.
This year, my birthday also falls on the same week as the anniversaries of two recent major tragic events – the April 16, 2007, shooting at Virginia Tech and the April, 15, 2013, bombing at the Boston Marathon.
These events are devastating memories, and have a profound impact on everyone in varying ways and at different levels. At the same time, seeing the way that masses of people can rally around those who were affected and both mourn the passing of the victims and celebrate their lives is an inspiring testament to human resiliency and community.
With all that has been going on this week, I am very grateful to celebrate my birthday for exactly what it is – even if that is now simply a passing of time. I have gotten to live every day of another year of my life exactly how I wanted to while others have not been so fortunate. I have worked, played, run, loved, learned, and laughed.
This week, I am truly thankful for the time I’ve had and the time I have left and my heart goes out to those who have had life or the ability to live life exactly how they would chose taken away from them.