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Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Meaning of 20

All of us who teach at BGSU, especially those of us whose salary never seems to be quite enough to get us through the month, are always well aware of the 20th of any given month. That's when we get paid. Yes, we only get paid once a month. You'd think my family would handle this situation better, seeing as it's been part of our lives for 21 years now. But still, the 20th of the month still makes me feel like a kid getting an allowance. Therefore, in general, the 20th of any given month should be auspicious. It should be a happy day. And, for the most part, it is. And we are all alway aware that it's the 20th.
Yet is seems statistically improbable that the 20th should also have garnered so much attention from me for other reasons as well.
Tynan's birthday is on the 20th. That's a good thing.
On that day I got the homebirth that I'd wanted and worked so hard for. Good Thing.
That good thing was tempered by the fact that 6 years prior to Tynan's birth, his sister was stillborn on the exact same day (for those of you for whom numbers cause confusion, that would also be the 20th). On the bright side, the birth experience was good and was a vbac. So, good mixed with horrible.
My mother called me to tell me she had incurable heart disease that would most likely kill her on the 20th (and while it did, she survived for three time longer than ever suspected).
We got the results of our first still born son's autopsy on the 20th and the memorial service for him was on the 20th of a different month. And we also met with the geneticist who reviewed his case on the 20th. Neither good nor bad, but quite emotional, all three.
I was initially diagnosed with cancer on the 20th. I suppose that's both good and bad...while it wasn't fun to hear, better diagnosed than not.
Yet, I hereby declare that the 20th be saved for pay day only for a long time.

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