Age 57 is a few days away. This wasn’t how it was supposed to be.

I was supposed to be complaining about a few wrinkles. I was supposed to be working hard to maintain my size 8. I was supposed to be excited about scuba diving with my son, playing hide and seek with my grandkids, making mosaic art pieces to sell at the local art fare, taking tennis and belly dancing lessons, completing three-day backpacking trips with friends, writing a book, attending events with my beloved where I where a gorgeous evening gown and we dance all night.

The version of 57 I have held onto did not include worrying about wetting my pants in public, being excited if I could take two steps and hold my back straight, borrowing money to build a ramp and a new bathroom that would accommodate a wheelchair and buying a new bed as a birthday gift to myself — recognizing that from this point on I will be spending quite a bit of time in bed, where are my 57-year-old body, that feels like it’s 107 yrs., can rest and find comfort.

Nope that wasn’t the way it was supposed to go.

Sometimes it doesn’t go the way it supposed to go.

Pandemics aren’t supposed to happen. Countries who claim they are united are not supposed to be divided. Dogs are not supposed to be chained up in the backyard in the snow. And police are not supposed to kneel on a man’s neck.

I often find comfort in thinking about all the ways that my life wasn’t supposed to go and how grateful that I am it did.

Because really, I was not supposed to have the love of my life at age 45. This love showed up in a woman’s body. That certainly wasn’t supposed to happen. I wasn’t supposed to live in a beautiful home in Cheyenne Canyon in Colorado. I wasn’t supposed to move here, not knowing anyone, and now have lifelong best friends. I wasn’t supposed to have my dream job that required only my brain and not my body and that I could do from the comfort of my couch.

So, as I count the hours before my 57th birthday and I get out my debit card to buy that bed, I am at peace knowing that letting go of your story of how something is supposed to be and accepting he way it is a relief. A gift. A way of being.

Perhaps the most ironic part is that I never would’ve guessed my 57-year old self would be so accepting of what is.

I used to hang on so tight.

Happy birthday to me.