Today, I am thirty-four years old.
I don’t have a trove of lessons learned or a list of accomplishments (There is that book I published last year. Still for sale, by the way). I kinda covered all that in the #ImNotWashedWorldTour post.
What I have, instead, is gratitude.
Ten years ago, my birthday kicked off a spiral that ended with me believing life wasn’t worth living. Today, I am my Happily Ever After.
I celebrated over the weekend with happy hour Friday and a seafood boil Saturday. In both instances, I was surrounded by my tribes; people who– with their presence, support, and fun personalities–help make my life amazing. We drank, we laughed, we ate well. I couldn’t have asked for better celebrations.
On Sunday, I got my fifth tattoo. I’ve wanted something writer-themed in typewriter font for a while. Settled on the title of one of my favorite poems, “Life is Fine” by Langston Hughes.
Life is Fine
Langston Hughes, 1902 – 1967
I went down to the river,
I set down on the bank.
I tried to think but couldn’t,
So I jumped in and sank.
I came up once and hollered!
I came up twice and cried!
If that water hadn’t a-been so cold
I might’ve sunk and died.
But it was Cold in that water! It was cold!
I took the elevator
Sixteen floors above the ground.
I thought about my baby
And thought I would jump down.
I stood there and I hollered!
I stood there and I cried!
If it hadn’t a-been so high
I might’ve jumped and died.
But it was High up there! It was high!
So since I’m still here livin’,
I guess I will live on.
I could’ve died for love—
But for livin’ I was born
Though you may hear me holler,
And you may see me cry—
I’ll be dogged, sweet baby,
If you gonna see me die.
Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine!