50 loops, a timeline

8:25 am – Edie wakes me up. I am currently under 3 blankets because the furnace isn’t working… yet.

8:44 am – At this exact moment, I am officially 50 years old.

10:55 am – A call from Joe Rauck, an HVAC guy my nephews recommended. He’ll be here shortly to hopefully fix said furnace.

11:20 am – My brother stops by unexpected with a birthday gift. He wrapped it very nicely. It is an eye chart and he thinks it’s hilarious. (It is.)

12:28 pm – Spent some time in the spare bedroom putting random things on built-in shelves (see photo above). I haven’t lived anywhere with built-in shelves since childhood. I’m giddy at the prospect yet realizing if these clocks aren’t synchronized, this will not work AT ALL.

1:00 pm (ish) – Joe Rauck successfully replaces the furnace blower. WE HAVE HEAT! This is the greatest gift. (An extra hat tip to my nephews Matt & Mark for the recommendation.)

3:10 pm – Casey and I return from a long walk on Wasson Way using a secret path to get back to our street. I suppose the path is not secret, but if you blink you’ll miss the half-size sidewalk forming a narrow path between houses.

3:42 pm – Mail arrives. Emily sent a homemade card of our house!

4 – 6 pm – Work. (Shaking fist at who is responsible for this. Wait, that’s me.)

7:46 pm – Unwrap some gifts. I receive a three way chili spaghetti candle and Taylor Swift’s Red on vinyl. (The candle smells like cinnamon.)

8:47 pm – Benihana is delivered! I miss being with friends and family around that hibachi grill, but this year makes everything difficult.

9:59 pm – The surprise. Casey fires up a 20 minute video of friends and family sending birthday wishes. I keep taking photos of the screen like an idiot thinking the moment will pass. I laugh, I cry—it’s all so wonderful.

January 17, 2022, 7:40 pm – It’s been a month since this moment and I’ve watched that video half a dozen times. I also have been hoping there’d be some big a-ha, some grand perspective to share as I enter this fifth decade.

When I dig deep? I’m just happy to be.

And even happier to be surrounded by goodness, near and all too often in this moment? Far.

We’ll get those clocks synchronized.