Grateful for Another Year in the Land of the Living

Yesterday was my favorite day of the year: November 24. It’s my birthday, and every since I was a child, I have thought it was the “cat’s meow.” I love it, for there is somethings so wonderful in knowing that I was born on this day.Douglas and I celebrated the day alone. I received happy birthday wishes from children and grandchildren, which always makes my day!

Douglas joked on Facebook that he had spent a lot of money on me yesterday, but actually he didn’t have to spend anything for my lunch or visit to the Georgia Aquarium. Both were free to everyone on their birthday! We only found out about the restaurant’s free policy from our pastor during the meet and greet during yesterday’s 8:30 church service.

We had a great Italian meal before going to the aquarium. Free seems to always taste better, but it was great pasta and meat sauce, and the salad and garlic rolls were very good. They gave us spumoni ice cream that was green, pink, and chocolate, again for free.

At the Aquarium, we saw so many varieties of fish and mammals, some huge and other almost too small to see. There was no flash photography allowed, but we could take some photos. I was saddened to hear of the many fish types that are nearly extinct.

At the aquarium, they have many programs to try to breed, such as otters, to prevent extinction. One man suggested we eat smarter regarding seafood, making sure what we eat comes from sustainable sources, something I had never thought about until yesterday. I have to look at the cans of tuna more carefully!

Beautiful!
The sheer variety stunned me

We attended the Dolphin Show. That ten-year-old boy trying to come out of Douglas insisted we sit in the ninth row. By the time I learned that the first ten rows was a “splash zone,” there were no more seats. We thought that we would just get sprayed a little. But, when the dolphins started jumping and flipping, we got soaked to the skin, with mouthfuls of salty water and hair completely wet. Thank God for Afros!

I started to complain and say, ” I told you,” but I stopped myself. I decided that no one was hurting me, and when I decided not to act like I was personally hurt, i saw the humor. Douglas, afraid that I was about to go off on him and complain, started trying to protect me from the water, but I told him I was enjoying myself.

And I did! I felt like a kid again, enjoying the pleasure of living to be 68 years old. I have so much to be thankful for that grousing over having my newly dry-cleaned jacket covered in water just wasn’t happening! I chose to see the wonder in it, not any offense. Maybe I am growing up, finally!

I don’t take for granted that I will live to see next year’s birthday, so I thank God, the great I AM for another year. Psalm 27:13 states, “Yet I am confident I will see the LORD’s goodness while I am here in the land of the living.” Truly, I can say that this past year has brought much of the Lord’s goodness into our lives, including a new home in a new state and I will start teaching again in January. Hallelujah!

Maybe as a society, we need to rethink what is possible after age 65, not believing that we have to retire because we have reached a certain number. Instead, I realize that as more of us grow older and live into our eighties and nineties, possibly to 100, we can still contribute, if we want, and live every day in the fullest, meeting our potential regardless of our age.

Although my pastor said that I didn’t look older than 63 (yes, we have to tell him that, for a woman, that wasn’t a compliment!), I am excited to see what I will accomplish at age 68. Here’s to still being in the land of the living!

8 thoughts on “Grateful for Another Year in the Land of the Living

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  1. Happy 68th birthday, Regina! Celebrating you and your life. Really got a chuckle with the dolphins enjoying their life and celebrating with you! After the Biblical flood, got set man’s life at 120 years and Abraham and many of his descendants surpassed that. Enjoy your new year!

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  2. Belated Happy Birthday to you, Regina. Your wonderful post reflects that you had a much-blessed and joyful birthday celebration. I love the photos! I’m only a year behind you (Sept)–and grateful that God saves a lot of His Best for our latter years. Hugs and extra blessings to you as you enjoy the holidays, and gear up to teach class in January 🙂

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  3. Happy Birthday! The way my husband and I see life is that as long as we are breathing, God has more for us to do. In our “refirement” we are missionaries to children, and loving it! I love that you chose to enjoy the moment water and all, and experience the wonder of what you were seeing. That’s living! Happy blessed Thanksgiving to you and your family ♥

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