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Another birthday

Kathy Werner
Posted 7/29/22

I have a rather momentous birthday that is quickly bearing down on me.   I have no idea how exactly I have reached this grand age, but it seems that somehow or other, I have.  

My …

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Another birthday


I have a rather momentous birthday that is quickly bearing down on me.  I have no idea how exactly I have reached this grand age, but it seems that somehow or other, I have. 

My daughter hates it when I say I am old, and perhaps she is right.  Maybe old is 90.  Or 100. Or 80.  I think those ages all sound old to me.  Well, maybe 80 isn’t so old. 

Sadly, I’m guessing that with the advent of this birthday I can no longer be considered middle-aged. Ugh. 

Now I understand my mother when she would bemoan the aging process. “I don’t like it when people treat me like an old lady” she would say.  “I don’t need help getting out of a chair! I still feel like I’m sixteen inside!” 

One of the Democrat’s most beloved features is Down the Decades.  I thought I might take myself down the decades right here. 

1952-Born in Arlington, Virginia at Fort Belvoir to Shirley Kohler Stabbert and Fred W. Stabbert Jr. who was serving in the Army.  Named Kathy Lee, she was the first child for the couple. She would soon be joined by Laurie, Billie, Mary and Fred III. 

1962-Kathy celebrates her tenth birthday with friends and family. She is entering fifth grade at Delaware Valley Central School and her teacher will be Marietta Hornicek.  Kathy knows Mrs. Hornicek (née Buddenhagen) since she and her parents moved into an apartment connected to the Buddenhagen house in Hortonville after they left Virginia when Kathy was a toddler.  Among Kathy’s earliest memories is saying “Kay, in!” so that Kay Buddenhagen would open the back door for her. (And no, I was not 10 years old at the time!) 

  1972-Kathy celebrated her birthday in Callicoon, fresh off her six-week stay with Uncle Bob Stabbert and his family in Amsterdam, Netherlands. She would have stayed longer, but Don and Jean Molusky were holding a job for her as a waitress at the Autumn Inn, and she needed the money to pay for college at Albany State, where she was getting her teaching degree. 

1982-Kathy is now married to John Werner of Port Jervis, and they are the parents of Elizabeth Ann, age 4 and Michael John, who just celebrated his first birthday. They live in a lovely split-level home in New Hampton, just outside Middletown.  Kathy is a stay-at-home mom, and she often gets together with her mom and sisters and their children.  There are many trips to Peekskill and Connecticut for these gatherings, and the cousins grow up to be close. 

1992-Daughter Liz throws Kathy a killer surprise birthday party, with the help of good friends Marilyn and Kendra. Kathy has gone back to work teaching school, John is still in banking, and the kids are growing up fast.  Oh, and it’s been 14 years since she started writing this very column. 

2002- Apparently, we all survived the millennium. 

2012-Lots of travel, work, and fun with the family. Kathy is still middle-aged, by her own definition, but the sting of this birthday is soothed by a great birthday party thrown by daughter Liz and featuring Canadian friends Dorothy and Markku! 

 2022- The dreaded day approaches, but the love of friends and family eases the pain, as Liz throws yet another killer soiree for her Mumsy.   

I’m still trying to recover from the thought of turning 70, but if I am surrounded by such wonderful people, I’m ready to take on the challenge. 70 is the new 50, right?


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