Nothing Finer than Living in North Caroliner

Nothing Finer than Living in North Caroliner
Blue Ridge Smoky Mountains

Friday, April 18, 2014

Day 325 - Fifty Cents - Never Ever Hate

My mother always calls me on my birthday.  She doesn't just "call me", she patiently waits until the second hand hits the twelve on the clock at precisely 10:05 AM to call me.  And I answer the phone always anxiously awaiting anyone who will call me on my birthday.  She answers with....Happy Birthday!  I remember exactly when you were born 10:05 and I first thought I had a 10 lb 5 oz baby!  This always makes me laugh.  That is what is so great.  Mom makes me laugh!  It's been a long road for us as daughter and mother. We've finally reached the plateau of mutual respect and deep cherished love.  It is a special place. 

So today my hip hurts and my stomach isn't so good, and after four knee surgeries and a foot surgery, a broken arm, a broken collarbone, I'm glad to report that most things work!  So physically my body is wearing down.  I still ride a bike (shows balance and tenacity), and hike waterfalls, and walk.  NO more aerobics and running or playing basketball or refereeing.  But mentally I'm more alive than I have ever been.  A friend called today and left a simple message, "Welcome to the Club!"  Wow I'm finally part of a group! Never did like sororities, or groups where I couldn't be me and say what I feel.  This club seems perfect for me!

I  received more love this year to accompany the gifts.  Friends from Germany sent their special chocolate, and of course chocolate and shoes are any woman's favorite so Steve blessed me with shoes from Johnston & Murphy!  So cool!  I love saddle shoes as they remind me when I was a cheerleader.  My best friend who cheered with me also sent a box of gag gifts like old-age soap and WD-Oldie for creaky joints.  And of course I had my date with my tiara.  A tradition I hope never ends. Wearing it out on my birthday is so fun!

I have noticed that through the last decade I've evolved to a point that I really don't care what people think anymore.  It is a fabulous place to be.  I'm a good person, always try to do the right thing, ask for forgiveness when I don't but more importantly, I can look myself in the mirror and know that I have tried to assess the best of any given situation and try to look at the positive of anything.  And I mean anything.  

I've started painting and really feel very good to have been asked to paint a set for a play only to be asked again from an emmy-nominated artist to return and paint a second set.  Wow! I'm truly humbled!  I like buying $5 soap and $9 scented candles because I think I'm worth it.  So many years of scrimping and saving to pay for the groceries, the kids shoes, the dentist appointments, the healthcare, the car payment, the utilities, and the bills.  Now its just bills from things I WANT to buy, not the things I didn't have cash for and HAD to buy.  It's different, bills of choice.  My friends told me once when you get to this age, it's just bills and pills.

Don't Dress for Dinner Set French Barn turned into Cottage Decorations from my actual home!

Which is not true.  I still have grandchildren to experience, selling my first painting, sharing my love of life with people who really appreciate my past.  Someday I hope they will make a documentary about my involvement with the Multiracial Movement and my speech I gave, as that was history that we haven't come to a place to appreciate yet.  I might learn how to play the piano.  I might play my flute in a symphony again, I may act, Lord knows I can't sing.  There are still many things to do.  I want to travel and see Europe, Brazil and Australia.  Laugh with others from another culture.  There are two things that transcend all languages and cultures, laughing and smiling.  (don't smile at bears, they see this as a sign of aggression however!)

And I have a dream to follow in the father's side of the family to own a business. I really want to own a Wine & Design franchise.  The ability to paint has liberated me.  How soothing the paint brush feels when strokes take on a life or object or movement.  You can play with the style and learn from each painting.  I know I am grateful to God for another year and hope that this year he continues to bless me.  There are still a couple more dreams I have, not many, but a couple.

We watched the short movie (Oscar award winning) A women in Room Six.  It was about a woman who was a nine-year old child in the Holocaust and played piano.  She died just two weeks before the film won the Oscar.  She played the piano everyday even at the age of 109!  The German soldiers even listened to her play in Auschwitz.  In this film, her friend said, you know we come into this life alone and we leave this life alone.  If we are lucky enough to be able to spend part of it with others, cherish it, be grateful for it.  I have always subscribed to this philosophy.  Who would know better than someone who had their father, mother, brothers, grandmothers, friends entire support system killed at the hand of one emotion ...hatred.  Alice Herz  Sommer, the woman in room six stated she was honored to know her son of sixty-four years.  She outlived her own son and still was grateful for knowing him.  She said, never ever hate, never ever.  And if there was a mantra to her life, this would be it.  She was able to memorize all of Chopins twelve movements and many more.  Her body failed but her spirit will live on for ever.  I hope that will be my case....I only dream of this.

I'd like for my sons to truly appreciate the road I have traveled.  Each year one son will call and the other will forget, alternating years.  My oldest is spending time with me on this very special day, and my youngest son called at 11 PM on my birthday.  He remembered!  Today was a special day! Sometimes birthdays don't mean much to a person, they view it as another day.  It was always a special day growing up.  We didn't have much but Mom always made sure she baked a cake and invited our friends over.  So for me, it is special.  And I can always count on one thing...Mom will call at 10:05AM.  Love you Mom!  Thanks for making my fiftieth birthday so sweet!

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