How sweet to lie beneath
The wondrous beauty of a new dawn
To bask in the freshness and soothing
Caress of the morning breeze
How sweet to leave the shadow
Of yesterdays behind
And embrace the new day
The tender glow of sunrise
To me, this day is more than a birthday, that’s too ordinary. But what could make a birthday more than an anniversary of the day in which a person is born?
A second chance at life?
I got both, because if the devil had his wish I would exit here the same day I entered it. And I would be labeled so many evil things and more. But the Lord in His infinite mercy gave me life, again.
A birthday used to be just the celebration of my birth. When I ended one year and started another. After my twentieth anniversary it became, “what’s the big deal? Everybody has them. Someone has one every day.”
And now, there are so many thoughts and feelings attached to this day: happiness, apprehension, panics, blessing, anxiety, and gratitude, their incessant and persistent attacks can be so overwhelming and frustrating – A time bomb waiting to explode.
Over the years, I’ve learnt to accept them, feel them all, sort out the real from the imagined, and forge the strength to beat the delusion.
Today, I woke up again with the dread of facing the long day, my birthday. Because I had a doctor’s appointment, today of all days. Memories of my birthday not too long ago in surgery and ICU flooded my mind like rushing water. I was going to see the doctor who hacked off my limb on my birthday. I wanted to hide in bed all day. But then, I armed myself with the remembrance of all I had to be grateful for. The little things like sneezing without pain, stretching without whimpering and turning without grimacing. I’m grateful for the blessings of the people in my life who never let me feel bad about my life for a second. When I think He seems too far away or uncaring, I see Him in them. These little things make me realize just how blessed I am, and how much good I have in my life. They outweigh the bad.
Today, I realise that good or bad, there are benefits to everything; one simply needs to find them.
And that, birthdays are more than celebrating the inevitable passage of time.
When I found the album it was caked with dust. I wonder why it looked like a relic of the Second World War, I had flung it to the back of the closet, where I couldn’t reach it. But now I can, I’m much better, stronger and steadier. I opened it and was surprised that it opened to the last picture I saw. It was the picture I took at the front of our old house on my birthday five years ago, before everything fell apart. Except it looked nothing like me. I was darker, simpler calmer and very innocent with big eyes; uninteresting and young, but of course I was younger. I was dressed in a sky blue shirt and a dark blue knee-length jean skirt.
It shows the legs, nice, shapely smooth calves. I had nice legs, I know it and people said it too. They looked awesome, but they didn’t feel like mine. The last time I saw the picture, my whole body went still and everything around me too. My heart wouldn’t stop hammering at my rib-cage. My eyes were so heavy with unshed tears, I wanted them to drop to at least mourn their dead mate. But they wouldn’t, so I flung it.
Today, the picture look so unreal and so far away, a lifetime away. I looked down at the left limb where the rest of the leg was supposed to be. It stopped mid-air like a frozen raindrop waiting for someone to press the play button. And the right leg has put on a muscular and fierce looking armour; wearing protruding veins and scars, its warrior badges in place of its former sexy look.
The residuals of the traumatic experience has faded into occasional nightmares and buried amidst counsels of accepting the present, look into the brighter future and forget the past. I closed the album and stared at the face looking back at me from the mirror on the wall and wished she could tell me what this is, healing, denial or acceptance?
I need no legs
I’m one with
And the sky