Symbol of Change

I turn 33 tomorrow. Around age 10, my enthusiasm for my birthday faded. I saw it as a marker that I’d survived another year and nothing more. My birthday always seemed to arrive with complications and drama, so I put little stock into celebrating, despite secretly yearning for a slice of chocolate cake.

Except, turning 33 feels different; special somehow. Maybe it’s in the numbers, but most likely it’s all in my mind. I feel different. Birthday wishes, presents and all that junk aren’t important to me, except—for reasons I’m just beginning to understand—I actually feel like celebrating this year. Something’s tingling inside me. I think it’s hope.

It’s a strange, strange feeling. I haven’t felt hope in years.

The past few years have been tough. I’ve felt, in my darkest moments, like there’s no point to a lot of what I do and that grinding away has been an effort in futility. Positive change as a result of my actions has been elusive.

The love of my friends and family helps pull me through a lot of the darkness and I’ve enjoyed many moments. I can say that things have been OK, but not great. For the most part I can muster up a smile and a laugh and I do know how to enjoy myself, despite feeling like a part of me is (was) dead inside.

I’ve felt directionless and without purpose, despite working on some important projects for social change. There’s a big slice of something missing from my life, but I have no idea what it is. I used to feel hopeless about these feelings, but now this dead spot in my chest doesn’t feel so heavy. It’s nice to feel hope again.

It has nothing and everything to do with 33. It’s easy to create a signpost to mark when things will happen. I guess my mind has chosen my birthday as a symbol of change.

The veil is falling down and I’m happy to be alive.