Thursday, February 16, 2012

Looking Back...

I can't hide from this any longer - I am officially 40 years old.  There are always many things to be said about reaching those milestone birthdays and their bright sides and downsides.  I feel rather ho hum about it.  No major mid-life crisis, but not exactly feeling Forty and Fabulous either.  But I did get to thinking about the 40 years gone by, remembering some high points, trying to forget some of those less-than-pround-of moments. 

I was listening to the 80's station on satellite radio recently, which of course brings me right back to my high school years when those songs were played.  Some say high school is the best time of life.  High school was alright, but I would not want to be a teenager again. College was fun, and I am thankful for the memories, but I was glad to move on from there as well.

If I could go back in time, if I could pick a birthday to relive, I would have to pick my 37th.  These pictures were taken within days of my 37th birthday.  How could I not wish to go back to these days?

I look at her perfect, scar-free tummy here, and can hardly believe that only a month or so later we discovered that major tumors were growing in there.
Such a silly girl, so happy!

Three happy, healthy kids!  Life is good!

This is about the longest her hair would ever get to be.
On my 37th birthday, I was blissfully ignorant.  I was unaware that childhood cancer could affect anyone other than "someone else."  I could live each day happily in the dark about the names and side effects of the chemotherapies that kids get every day, about what life is like on a pediatric oncology floor.  I lived 37 years without knowing that there was a horrible cancer named Rhabdomyosarcoma.  About six weeks later, that all changed.  How much wiser I became!  How much more knowlegeable I have become in the three years since then. 

I must say that my fortieth birthday was very enjoyable.  I enjoyed a day / evening with much of my family (5 of my 7 siblings and their families) and even some fabulous college friends, thanks to the efforts of my incredible husband.  And because of what I learned when I was 37, we also walked in the Milwaukee CureSearch Walk for Childhood Cancer, so that hopefully, someday, others won't have to get the education I was forced to receive.

I am happy to be getting each day closer to heaven, but the next best thing would be to celebrate my 37th birthday once again.