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Opinion: Thoughts on turning 67

On Sunday, I will have made 67 trips around the sun, another joyous year spent on planet Earth.

I look forward to all the good things I know life has waiting for me. Being sad is exhausting. I don’t expect to be happy all the time. Happiness is like the weather. It changes every day. If I can attain contentment, that will be good enough.

One good way to keep from being sad is to count one’s blessings. Every situation has a dark and a light side to it.

Keeping it simple I have a comfortable roof over my head. I live safely in a gated community with nice neighbors who lend a hand if need be. There is food in the pantry and enough money to keep me going if I’m very careful with it.

I have no need for a fancy car. I’m happy with my little red Kia with the dings in the rear from that time I backed into the trailer hitch of a pickup truck. The best part is that the car is paid off. A new car would be nice, sure, but a monthly car payment is such a burden I say, “No Thanx!”

I spell thanks with an x to honor the last letter in the name I shared with my husband.

My maiden name is Hill. I thought if I ever married, I would be able to add a few letters to it resulting in a longer name. Instead, my name is now shorter than the one I started out with; who knew? If I wanted length for the sake of it, I always have the option of hyphenating.

We all have many last names we can use. The name we get at birth is usually our father’s name. We can also use our mother’s maiden name or a spouse’s name.

A person can change their name to anything they desire with the appropriate paperwork. Providing the reason for the change is in no way criminal or nefarious.

I’m celebrating my birthday this weekend knowing I’ve been blessed with so many of my dreams coming true. The career women I so admired as a kid, Lois Lane, Della Street and Euldeane Rosierre inspired me to mimic them in my own life.

While I don’t know Clark Kent or Superman, I am a semi-retired journalist for my hometown newspaper.

The lawyer I worked for wasn’t Perry Mason. I learned, to my dismay, that the life of an attorney and its support staff is more of a paper chase than I ever imagined. When I think of how many trees were sacrificed to generate all those sheets of paper, I just shake my head.

Like every job, selling Avon is a lot more work than I thought it would be. It is not all about playing with makeup and smelling perfume.

I didn’t know how much I would benefit from bookkeeping skills. I discovered with my first real job that it is one of the most valuable skills a person can possess.

I also learned the difference between family and relatives. At this stage in my life, most of my blood relatives have gone on to their final rewards. One’s family is made up of the people who are held close to your heart and they need not be connected by the branches of a family tree.

Sadly too many of them are gone but I do believe they are waiting for me on the other side of life.

Family is the people you love and hopefully, they love you in return.

My friends are now my family and I am grateful to have them. My colleagues at The Madera Tribune are an important part of my family. They have been a lot of support these last few years. Gratitude doesn’t come close to describing how I feel about my Tribune family.

Another part of the newspaper that makes me happy is knowing that those of you reading this column find it of value making the writing of it so worthwhile.

As I stride into this new chapter in my life, I try to do so with a smile on my face, a song in my heart and an attitude of good things to come.

Long days and pleasant nights. Have a blessed weekend.

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Readers may contact Tami Jo Nix by emailing or following @TamiJoNix on Twitter.



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