A Birthday Giveaway for YOU
Today is the first day of my 36th year, and I woke up full to the brim. My heart beats with a glisten. It beats like a song. I told my body to listen up. I said, “Wake up, Body. Get up; you’re 36 today.” But then the body had a neck cramp and remembered how much salt she ate yesterday, swollen fingers. She remembered the creaky knees and wiped mascara from her cheeks as she unfurled herself. Unfurling these days isn’t like before, not so much like a flower or a beautiful cloth snapped over a table. Even in the frame that stretches beneath my skin, I feel I must slow down. I need to take this leg by leg, bend by bend.
I think about my back, the rolling bones that bend me to cradle Titus, the unfortunate curl toward the computer so I could write Wild in the Hollow, the caddywompus sway inside my hips. Add 36 more years to this, and I’ll be 72. Maybe I am entering the years to be conscious of my bones, to slow down and consider what’s happening inside me – while it’s happening – instead of living in great knee jerks and course-correcting only after I half break.
One day I will want to read about this. I’ll be glad I slowed down to look at the bones of it. At the end of my 35th year, I published a book, and many of my friends gathered to celebrate with me. Erika and Austin travelled from Connecticut to surprise me, and my little sister drove an entire day from Alabama. I grew wings and flew across the room. I heave-cried at the door. I didn’t expect to see most of the faces there.
We met in Dickson Street Theatre, the church meeting place now of Christ Community, but it used to be a bar. It’s gorgeous with a hint of trashy – totally my kind of place, except Jesus made that day be 120 degrees outside. You could see the air conditioner blow a string, but you couldn’t feel it. We were southern, fan-waving hot, drenched and hugging because we gave up.
I will remember my generous friends. I will remember seeing Sarah and Minah walking in such radiant light and grace that it took my breath away. I will remember Mike sweating bullets and staying anyway. I’ll remember that Corrie makes every room she touches something beautiful. I’ll remember how my church family and then brothers and sisters from at least 6 different churches came together. I’ll remember my friends who don’t believe what I believe, but they came anyway and were fully present.
We got to have story time, and we even sang together at the end. Story time and singing. Next time we’ll dance, but besides that, the whole world goes round with story time and singing. I’m overwhelmed. I have been given much, and so from me, much will be required. I know this.
I’m still learning how to be generous. I’m still receiving more than I could ever dream of giving.
What a gift! I have found myself feeling awfully grateful for this tiny lot who reads here. I’m more and more grateful to offer you something special. It’s a grace to me, especially in light of how you encourage me in this space.
To win Wild in the Hollow and the beautiful jewelry:
1) I would love for you to follow Dayspring on Facebook. They are such good people and local to me here in Northwest Arkansas.
2) Leave a comment on my facebook page and tell me the thing you want to stop right now and remember. When you’re twice your age, what do you hope to remember about today?
I’m so excited see 11 of you win this. I’ll announce the winners this coming Saturday, the 15th. See you there!