It is my birthday today. Celebrate with me! I am 35. Not young or old, 35. I'm happy being 35. 5s and 10s are good, round numbers. 35 beats 34 hands down.
Turning 35 is probably not much different than turning 30 or 68 or 22. I am still me. Though I still wonder sometimes what it is to be me, and what it means to be man-me. I thought it would be a more certain, a more sure thing, growing older. More knowing involved, I figured. But all the knowing only makes me know how little-knowing I am. And that's okay.
Life is not puzzle pieces waiting to be pieced together, but paints waiting to be painted with. It is not neat, but it is colorful. It is not precise, but it is perfect. There is a rightness about life that reveals itself in my children's smiles, my wife's love, and the change of seasons.
Let me tell you a secret: I have loved life. I have loved that even my imperfections and failures and sins have been used that I might better know and love people and better know and love God. I have loved being married to my wife. She knows me, and even in the knowing, she loves me. I have loved having children. It is difficult to express how much I have loved having children.
I love life.
Don't misread me: This world is full of tears. My world is full of tears. But right now, right now I feel as if joy (insurmountable, ineffable joy) will one day split me open, unveiling itself before an unsuspecting, tear-stained world.