Well, I made it. Woohoo. I turned 49 this past week and celebrated with friends and family. There were dragon masks and rings and my niece made a cake with the cover of my chapbook on it. It was beautiful.
So what’s the big deal about 49? Why I am writing now and not waiting for next year, the big 50? Well, it’s pretty simple. My father didn’t make it to 49. He died a week before his 49th birthday.
Dad had lymphoma and actually had it eight years before that but he had gone into remission. It came back in 1979. He died in 1980, a week shy of turning 49. I think this has been in the back of my mind as well as my siblings as we approached 49. None of had serious illnesses as we approached that birthday, but still, it was something to think about.
So now, I look forward to turning 50 and having an even bigger party than this year. I hope to celebrate in style for a at least a week. I also plan on living every year and every day trying to be the best person I can and to be happy. Dad always put things off, saying he would do that “x” when he retired and he never got to do that. So, I’m going to. For you dad.