In the country of my origin, it is ok to be any age. It is just a statement of fact without any shame, pride or embarrassment attached to it. It is the number of years one has lived on this planet in this birth so far.
However, when I look around me, there is a certain intrigue attached with the real number of years one has been around. It is a guessing game. Dinner table conversations can be held for a considerable period of time trying to estimate the age of particularly vain friends. It’s a fun process to observe. It is spoken about in whispers. It evokes all kinds of emotions in people. There are some who don’t want to reveal to others or even admit to themselves how old they are. Some blatantly lie about their oldest child’s age so that they may sound younger than they really are. I find this game very amusing even though I don’t play it.
Recently I attended an aunt’s 80th birthday party. It was an uplifting event where i met some inspiring people who have led and are still leading interesting and fulfilling lives.
I will be 49 years old in a few days. This will be my first birthday without my son since he was born. I completely own my years. They are mine to have lived, loved, learned and be blessed with a privileged existence. I believe in smiling.
With no grey hair or a beer belly to worry about, my son will always be 20 and heartbreakingly handsome.