Today is my 39th birthday.
Today I am living in Alabama.
39 years ago, I was born in Alabama.
This is the first birthday that I have spent in Alabama since the day I was born.
Why does this seem fantastic? Because, all of my life, I’ve had an Alabama connection. Birth. Death. Family…
Alabama has always been my home. It’s not where I grew up. Or started school. Or had my first date. But it’s where my families hail from. Where I spent every Christmas until my senior year of high school. Summer breaks. The occasional Easter break. Where Mamaw lived.
Until last December, when at the young age of 95 she was suddenly gone. No longer did I feel like I had a home in Alabama. A reason to go to the very state that was so dear to me.
I had no idea a year ago that I would be here, in Alabama, sitting on my porch watching my kids play football in Alabama dirt. No idea that the love of my life was born, bred and living in the state that is so much a part of me and my heritage. No idea that I’d fall in love with a man who is an alumni of the very team that made Mamaw, a lifelong diehard Vols fans, stretch out her arms to stop a discussion about during the last hours of her life.
I have come full circle. Back to my roots. I have never felt more at home or more at peace than I do now. In Alabama.
Life is funny.
Life is grand.
Life is good.
Life is fantastic.
It’s the best birthday ever.