Monday, March 26, 2007

My Birthday

Today I am officially fifty six years old. I celebrated this by visiting an orthopedic doctor. Based on my own research, self diagnoses, and the extreme pain that I feel, I believe I have a torn rotator cuff. We’ll see what the doctor thinks after my examination and what needs to be done about it.

The end is near for the total chaos on the first floor of my home. Quite frankly, it has been driving me a little crazy. I dislike the disruption in my life. For several weekends now my son, and sometimes my daughter in law, have been coming over to paint. I think they are finally done. Sometime before the end of the week we will be getting rid of old furniture so the carpet guys can yank out the old carpet and install the new carpet before the new furniture is delivered. Do I need a flow chart here? I will be so glad when it is all over. Admittedly, I have contributed very little to this makeover except for occasionally being a beast of burden. My wife, son, and daughter in law deserve all the credit for the transformation. I have been somewhat resistent to this change. I am not preparing an acceptance speech for a husband of the year award.

In the spiritual life the metaphor of the desert is often used to describe a period of dryness and aridity. I cannot talk about the spiritual life without talking about all of life. It is all the same to me. Regular life and the spiritual life are so closely woven together that I cannot separate them. If my day to day life seems good, then I also seem to experience spiritual consolation. If my day to day life seems tiresome and unfulfilling, then spiritually I seem to be wandering in the desert. The combination of busyness at work and at home, not feeling really great physically, spiritually wandering in the desert, and having a heightened sense of my own mortality as another birthday arrives, exhausts me. Last week when Chloe and I were outside looking at the flowers, she got away from me and started running. I thought I was going to have a heart attack before I caught her. The chase was a metaphor for how I currently feel. Chloe represents youth and vitality and both of them seem to be running away from me. I feel old and tired. I know these feelings will not last forever and will eventually be replaced by more positive and contended feelings. Of course, when you are in the desert all you can think about is your thirst. I know, however, after traveling the journey of life for fifty six years that an unexpected, transcendent moment can come into your life and transport you from an arid desert to a cool garden


Bryan said...

Happy Birthday Michael! I hope you had the chance to at least have a nice birthday meal.


Michael Brown said...

Thank you, Bryan!