It turned out nice that I forgot to get the mail yesterday, because I walked out to the mailbox and got my only birthday card on my birthday. I never was a fan a sending cards, but sometimes all it takes is something little to make an "old man" happy on his birthday. Wow, who would have thought 39 years could creep up on a person so quickly.
You get to a point that one day you wake up and realize that things aren't the way they used to be, and they aren't the way you envisioned them. You have an epiphany of sorts, and reality sets in.
And you realize that old saying your mom always said might have some truth to it: "The older you get the faster time goes."
I remember when I was ten thinking that I didn't want to grow up. I'm sure most kids don't do this, but I literally stopped and smelled the roses. I remember savoring the moments.
Now, as an adult, the moments have gone by and in another lifetime, another 39 years, I will be 78. Wow. I take a deep breath and sigh. Better yet, I'm going to savor the day with my wife and kids.
Which brings me to another point. As a kid I loved to get materialistic birthday presents and mom insisted we kids didn't spend our money on anything for her birthday. That the best gift we could give is to simply be good.
Now, as an adult, I understand fully what mom meant. A wonderful day and a happy birthday to me was not the materialistic gift my wife and children didn't get me, but the smiles and hugs and "happy birthdays" they presented me with upon my awakening.
On a side note, I posted this picture because I am the baby.
My grandpa was 80 when he held me. Mom said, "We named him after you, dad. His name is Richard Stephen too." He smiled big and Auntie Virgie snapped this picture. Grandpa died three months later, living just long enough to hold me.
My grandma told me she was bringing this picture to me when I was 10, but she lost it. 28 years later my Auntie Virgie found it for me. It was a great birthday gift.
Happy birthday to me.