October 11, 2011 at 9:30 am (Death and Dying, Living, Spiritual, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

Today I am the oldest I have ever been.

-Seen on a T-shirt

Today is my 37th birthday. It’s one of those years that no one celebrates. For those of you who are younger, there comes a time where you stop really celebrating your birthday every year, and only wait for the ones that have some artificial meaning, like a new decade. The only association I have with the number 37 is this:

Dante: how many, how many dicks have you sucked?
Veronica: something like …36?
Dante: 36, is that including me?
Veronica: ummm …37?
Dante: 37!! (Turns to Customer) my girlfriend sucked 37 dicks.
Customer: In a row?


Not really something I want to think about. (Not that anyone I know has celebrated a birthday year by trying to suck that many cocks. I have no friends like that at all.)

I’m not doing anything super spectacular for this birthday. I have a few friends coming over for dinner, and then later on this week I have a date night with Ninja planned. I already got my present from Ninja at Disney, so I don’t really have anything like that to look forward to either.

I just feel like I’m older than I’ve ever been. And yes, I know 37 is not very old in our era, but just like I felt like turning 30 was the end of my life as I knew it (and in some ways, it really was) the fact that I’m a year older now just makes me feel closer to death. Instead of thinking about the year ahead, like I did when I was younger (“Now I’m 9! Think of all the wonderful things 9 year olds get to do!”) I think about the year behind. 36 was hard.

I should feel triumphant. My life has been pretty rough – I survived a pretty challenging childhood, a terribly bad young adulthood, a complete nervous breakdown, a marriage that turned out to be a mistake, a commitment I thought was going to last the rest of my life and then didn’t, a complete destruction of my personality and sense of self and rebuilding process that took place hundreds of miles from anywhere familiar, the death of one of my parents, and now this mystery chronic illness that is slowly eating away at my ability to enjoy life. In the last year, I ended a relationship that meant a great deal to me, I have had even more intrusive symptoms that make life harder, and spent more time at home in bed than I ever have before.

On the up side, I am still here. Even as recently as this weekend, I was able to give someone a Message from the Gods that they desperately needed. I received one of the most touching love letters I have ever had yesterday from my girlfriend Ruth. I have this wonderfully strong marriage that bends and changes as we bend and change, that gives me hope and support and makes me want to wake up every morning. I get little notes from my friends reminding me that I am important to them. I know that I still make a meaningful impact on the world, in my own strange way. So it’s a good thing I have lived another year.

Instead of celebrating, I almost feel like I should memorialize the year behind. Let it go, dissolve into the ether; let it’s lessons mark me and make me stronger and let the hurts and disappointments give me resolve to look for more happiness in life. Along those lines, I reached out to someone I’ve been crushing on and made a move. Let that be my birthday present to myself. I still have hope.

In these last years I have left, I feel like I should be looking at each one like a vintage. Condense the feelings and emotions, the memories and the sensations down into something spiritually tangible. That way, when I look back at 36, I can soak in what I want to remember from it in a mouthful of complex tastes and smells, but have it be a singular experience. 36 would taste like bitter red wine, but the rim of the glass would be coated in opiates that made you feel withdrawal the next day. It would smell oaky and dark, be chewy like wine is chewy, but with a small whiff of cinnamon and tabasco. The aftertaste would be slightly acidic and the sulfates would roll along the sides of your mouth. If you drank too much of it, it would give you a really shitty hangover the next day; but just enough would give you moments of dark ecstasy, like indulging in a fetish you haven’t really come to terms with. It would definitely cling to the sides of the glass like blood, and is best served in big glass goblets that would make even the manly hands of a drag queen look dainty.

I don’t know what my hopes are for 37. I can only say that I have some. Even as I do the Work I need to do to prepare to die, I’ll take today off and think about what I need to do to prepare to live. It’s the much harder of the two, but it’s also the most fun.

Hail Loki, who gives me the fire of life through my veins, who gives me my purpose and keeps me pointed towards the Ultimate Goals;

Hail Odin, who reminds me that the journey is a gift of joy, if you put your back into it and do the Work;

Hail Erzulie Dantor, who gives me love and affection when I am lonliest;

Hail Erzulie Freda, because I should;

Hail Ogun, for challenging me to be a man;

Hail the Lady, for Her healing presence and Her inspiration;

Hail Baphomet, who in His own way reminds me that my Decay is a spiritual process worthy of reflection, but that in the end, all efforts to save our lives will fail. Even when others wish to lend their strength, it is I who must walk towards the Other Side alone.

Hail all the spirits that guide and support me, and may they give me another year of life towards my Purpose.

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