As I sit, studying the faces of these beautiful women I call friend, I am awestruck at their generosity and wisdom. Wisdom born of a lifetime of living. I am a person who prefers to remain in the background, studying those around me. I've read so many so-called self help books. Seen shows proclaiming a magic number, when you turn 50, suddenly life becomes perfect. You achieve all this understanding and wisdom. It reminds me of childhood. When I turn 10, things will be better. Sixteen, I can drive. Life is grand. Eighteen, I can leave home and never look back. Twenty-one, I can go to some fancy nightclub and order a Cosmos, pretending to be as sophisticated as the women on TV and in the movies. Life tells me that it's not that simple. A number is just another year older. There is nothing magical about turning 50, despite what so many will claim. One thing turning another year older does bring into perspective, the life lived does catch up with you in unexpected and sometimes even wonderful ways.
To tell my story, I must look back even as that 18 year old me fears looking back. The me that I have become must look inward. Face the demons that have chased me through adulthood.
This time, the gathering is to support me for I have.....*