eleven :: twenty seven

Thursday night marked the ELEVEN year mark since the robbery. And yesterday marked TWENTY SEVEN years since I was born in Hartford Hospital. My dad was racing down to CT from Cape Cod, hoping to make it before I came. 🙂 The two anniversaries are eternally conjoined, it seems. But one thing that struck me this year (an outcome of a conversation with K actually) is that both are truly reasons to celebrate.

I have entered the phase (already!?) of getting semi-grouchy when I realize that another birthday as arrived. It means I am another year older, when truthfully I look at my life and often think “Ten years ago, if you’d asked me where I hoped I would be when I was 27, it would not be here!” Twenty seven and STILL in school (with years to go!), still no career, still not sure exactly what I’m doing with my life… still not married, don’t have kids, and am in uncharted waters for almost all of my family and friends. But K pointed out that reaching 27 is a huge blessing. So many people are not given that opportunity, either because of disease or poverty.  Historically, for many reasons, people’s life expectancy was much shorter and to reach 27 was a blessing. It still is. My Wheaton classmate Anna passed away one month ago, after a beautiful but difficult life, and she never reached her 27th birthday. Twenty seven is truly a reason to celebrate.

In my own life, I also have this glaring reminder every March 29th that I am fortunate to have reached another birthday. But for the grace of God, my 15th birthday could have been my last. So from now on, instead of remembering March 29, 2001 as a dark spot in my history, I want to remember it as a day that I was protected, and to celebrate each anniversary as another year God has given me; the conjunction with my birthday hopefully means this is a lesson I won’t easily forget.

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