Sunday, October 05, 2014

Extra Innings

The little boy in the creek is my daddy, Charles Columbus Shaw. He wasn't breathing when Lillian Ophelia Wilkerson Shaw delivered him on May 21, 1919. Lillian's step-mother Mattie Wilkerson took up the baby and breathed into his little mouth and started those lungs supplying oxygen to his heart as they continued to do for 24,668 days including 17 leap days and that partial day, December 3, 1986 when a blood clot stole him from us. Today is my own 24,668th day. Sometime in the next few hours -- or maybe already since I was born just after midnight on my birthday -- I will have surpassed him in one category, perhaps the only one. I will have lived longer. Who knew growing old happens so quickly?

My father's father, Grady Columbus Shaw, also died at 67. I passed his record several weeks ago.

I like to think that perhaps I got my longevity genes from my mother's side of the family. Ruth Baird Shaw is 91 and still driving, blogging, publishing books, challenging me and others on Facebook, and, if she gets a chance occasionally, preaching.

Grady and Charles Shaw certainly were deserving of more days, and we could have used their wisdom, humor, love, and support many times in the intervening years. Who knows why I get the extra innings? But I have them. However long they last, hours, days, months, or years, I swear by those two strong supporters of mine, that I will do my best to use my bonus revolutions around earth's axis, actively, purposefully, consciously, and with an acute awareness of my undeserved but much appreciated blessings. And just maybe I'll accomplish a little good along the way.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:23 PM

    Been working jobs I don't like. 65 now. Thinking bout retiring. Is this my sign?