When my mother was 34 I was 16 and she was pregnant with my baby sister, Hannah. When I turned 16 my mom was giant and uncomfortable and counting down the next seven weeks till she was due with her fifth baby, her last baby, my beautiful blond babiest sister.
When my daddy was 34 I was 12 and had long wavy hair and insisted on wearing giant oversized Pearl Jam t-shirts, cut off jean shorts and Doc Martens. He was pretty much the same as he is now except a little wild still yet and with a tiny bit more hair. He had some more oats to sow.
When Jeremiah was 34 we went through the second most horrible trial of our relationship. I was thinner and unhappy. He was brooding as usual but much, much angrier. The last three years have mellowed him exponentially. And with his mellowness I've gained some weight.
When my beloved Grandma Bert was 34 she was a mother, a worker and living a life similar to mine in some ways. She had three children from a previous marriage and two with her husband, my pappy, the love of her life. She was struggling, there was never quite enough money. They fought, they had fiery personalities, they loved each other explosively. In the end they mellowed out as well and had a happy life. Trying at times, yes, but in the end she was happy. At least, she said she was happy.
I turned 34 yesterday. My mother tells me I was born a little after 10:00 PM, just long enough after 10:00 to keep my grandma at the hospital with her and not at a card game. Last night at 10:00 I was in the arms of the man I love, digesting ice cream cake and mushroom pizza, watching Babadook in our dark gameroom underneath an electric blanket while my children were in bed in their rooms above us.
When I woke up this morning I didn't feel all that much different. I did fall asleep a little earlier than I usually do and Maxine Jane and I were dragging our feet before school and she had to run down to the bus stop. I had half an english muffin, a honeycrisp apple, a big mug of coffee. The sun is not out, the air is slightly damp, my hair is curly and unruly, the dog needs brushed and there's much, much work to be done before end of office hours today but I am happy.
And I'm 34.