Tomorrow my baby turns 21. My oldest child – the one that made me a mom. She is away at college, and I won’t get to see her. My strong urge is to drive up there, but I won’t. I will let her enjoy this young adult milestone as she should – with her young friends.
Earlier this year I turned 50. Over the pandemic, I let my gray hair grow out. My surviving parent died just months ago, and my oldest sibling will turn 65 this year. This morning I received a facebook ad targeted at “seniors” ages 50 and up.
Getting older is still foreign to me. When I see myself in a photograph, I still gasp a little at the white hair framing my face. But with age has come comfort as well. Gone is the almost crippling anxiety I experienced as a younger professional and mother. Gone is the constant attention my little children required. Gone is the job I dreaded going to each day.
In their place a happiness of more financial security and a job that is fulfilling. A good night’s sleep almost every night. Children who are both my babies and my friends.
And so to my baby – my daughter whom I still call my baby Rose – Happy Birthday tomorrow! I will be thinking of you while not driving to Charlottesville, and perhaps humming the tune to “Turn Around You’re Tiny, Turn Around You’re Grown.”
I expect something in my eyes will make them water…