Looking Back On A Well-Lived Decade, With Much More To Come

By Judith Kristen, AAP Columnist

Well, here it is, April of 2017.

And on April 3, it will be my 69th birthday, the last of my 60’s and one more move closer to the BIG 7-0.

When I turned 60, I genuinely celebrated. We had a great party, a tie-dyed birthday cake, lots of wonderful friends – even from as far away as Germany. It was a blast!

Numbers never scare me as they do for many women. In example, I have friends I graduated high school with who are now 15 years younger than I am!

First of all, I am just happy to be here; second of all, I felt that since 60’s the decade was so good to me… my “personal” 60’s would be equally interesting.

Now that I have an entire decade to look back on all of it… the word for its entirety was far, far more than that.

I’ve known the joy of a loving relationship, the stress of having it wobble through my husband’s bad work situation, and the recovery of him finding a job that makes both Andrew and I happy. And there was the over-the-top relief in becoming cancer free!

There was also the accomplishment of writing 14 well-received books, the honor to have so many kind, good, and loving friends, and the excitement and adventure of teaching and traveling to Europe six times.

This last one is hard to write… as I must add to my 60’s the tremendous sadness and heartbreaking grief over the sudden loss of my darling son Jon on May 20, 2015… and yet even in that loss, Jon’s love for his Mom still manages to find me just when I need it the most.  Bless your heart, Jonny. You’re still a wonderful son.

And so… here I am at age 69. I’m still happy to be here. And I hope when you see me and we talk, you’ll feel happy just because we did. I know I will.

As for the next one? That BIG 7-0? Well, seven has always been my lucky number… so I plan to knock this one right out of the ballpark. After all, for me, 70 will just mean I’m 18 with 52 years experience!

Peace and love and birthday cake for everyone!

Love to all,

~ Judy

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