Yesterday was my birthday. I peered into the mirror and noticed the little lines around my eyes are getting more pronounced, the commas by my mouth are deepening, and my hair is becoming sprinkled with silver. I've wondered if it would bother me, aging. But I can look at the skin that is sagging and stretched and remember the two lives that I carried under my heart. I can look at the lines on my face and see the joys and the sorrows they represent. My mouth crooks slightly to the left when I smile, and based on the imprint it has left-the smiles must be frequent. My body carries a million different memories, each showing that I have lived. I have lived. I have laughed and cried, and squinted in the sun. I have stretched and expanded with birth. My nose quirks from being broken in a game of softball, and my knees ache sometimes when the weather changes. I have scars from chicken pox and spots from the sun. But I have been living, and I am reminded that that is a privilege denied to many.
Ten years ago, I was 21 and 4 days out from having Aidan. I was newly married and my husband still had hair. I was pretty sure I knew what the world owed me and what part I had to play. Today, I have more questions than answers some days. In some ways, I would have imagined my life looking like this, and in some ways I never would have guessed. But here I am, and I'm thankful. I'm thankful for the journey; for the joys and the scars. For the outward evidence and the inward transformations.
In ten more years, what will my life look like? I confess, I don't have much of an idea, but I'm looking forward to finding out.