59 is only a number, but 59 is a number, a marker, an indication of some thing, some moment, some time— as in 59 could be minutes before my wonderful son whom I love so much arrives with his blessed wife the mother of our holy grandchild. 59 could be the cost of something as in 59 cents (what really cost 59 cents, didn’t realize there’s not a cents symbol on my computer until I realized little of anything costs 59 cents, wait, really bad beer on sale, but you have to buy the whole six-pack, never mind, I only drink Guinness). 59 could be the weight of something, but my dog only weighs 20 pounds, a bit less than my holy grandson, trust me I don’t weigh 59 pounds. 59 could be the number my beloved and I have been together, but not yet—we have been friends for 50 years and lovers for 41, those are divine numbers. 59 is the number of years my dad has watched over me, cared for me and loved me. He told me so today, and that is the best gift I could imagine. That leads me to today—59 is the number of years I have been on this earth, 21,550 days. Yes, that is correct an even number of days when including 15 leap years. There’s an odd thought. What did I do with all those days? Don’t ask. Best not to think about it. I know I wasted too many of them.
How do I feel about being 59? Not sure. I don’t mind being 59, it doesn’t bother me or make me feel old, I guess. My sister who has Prader-Willi Syndrome still called me to sing happy birthday. She calls me her bother—I tell myself this is because she can’t say brother, but there are times I wonder if she doesn’t mean I am actually her bother. My daughter called me to sing the happy birthday song version, “You look like a monkey and you smell like one too.” Did I shower this morning? Now this is a sign of being 59—asking a non-redundant question. I pray to God the question is not redundant and that I can remember what redundant means and that I did take a shower. Maybe I should go take one before the tricker-treaters arrive, just to be on the safe side.
Ah yes, there is the small factor that I was born on All Hollows Eve, the feast day of Samhain, the day that almost cost my mother her life. My mother nearly bled to death giving me birth. I am intensely thankful she survived. And I am deeply sad she can’t call me today, though I may hear her voice before the day is over or see her in my dream tonight (I do so much hope so).
I’m okay with the number 59. I know I don’t have 59 more years to live, maybe 30, maybe 20, maybe 20 minutes. The question is what I will do the next whatever I have to live, move, and have my being on Mother Earth. I’m working on it. Give me another 59 minutes, at least. Slainte.
Priest, pilgrim, writer, alchemist—living into the mystery, the knowledge, and the practice of sacred alchemy. I've walked across Ireland, almost 400 miles of mountains, valleys, forests, and magic. The pilgrimage was a mirror of my life's journey, coach, president, priest. Traveler of the life's struggles—from failure to re-imagination—still walking.