On Alternative Birthday Celebrations....
DykeFriend offers to come over and bring me some goodies. I make a request for fried chicken and fries, and she happily obliges.
We got to talking about our various concerns; she's 72, and her newly-married son just isn't stepping up to the fact that his mother is elderly, and will require support for her medical and financial needs. He's got plenty of money, but unwilling to share it with his mom.
I tell DykeFriend that I'm struggling as well: my 60th is coming up, and I just don't feel like celebrating. In fact, I feel more like mourning.
"Mourning? It sounds like you're really scared of aging...."
"No, I don't mind aging and I'm comfortable turning 60, because these days, it's not like I'm old and infirm (except for the recovery from knee and foot issues...)"
"So why mourning. What do you have to be sad about."
I explain that I'm suffering "survivor's guilt," because I've outlived both of my sisters, and my parents are also deceased. There's not much to celebrate: I got to 60 by not dying.
"What do you feel like doing?"
"I feel like lighting a bunch of yahrzeit candles and crying."
(These are religious candles that Jews light to remember the dead.)