I remember when I turned 30. (And no, I'm not going to tell you how long ago that was!) I was downright depressed. I was turning OLD. What to do to make myself feel better?
I decided to throw myself a "surprise" birthday party, invite my friends over for cake and ice cream and fun and games and console myself for being OLD.
Oh, brother. I look back on that now and think, I'd love to be thirty again! Well, okay, actually, I'd like to be right where I am in life... only with my thirty-year old body.
Time has changed me, that's for sure. But once thing hasn't changed, and that's the tradition of the annual "surprise" birthday party. Over the years that party has taken different forms, everything from roller skating adventures to going dancing. But the last few years it's settled down into a girlfriend afternoon, with cake and punch and snacks and lots of conversation and fun and games - the kind the guys don't like to play, like Charades and Taboo. (Most of the men I know seem to hate word games. I think it's because of that Mars & Venus thing - the guys just don't have as many words in their arsenal and they always lose.) Anyway, it was great fun, and I collected birthday cards galore. One of my favs says, "We'll be friends until we're old and senile. And then we'll be new friends." Ha!
Gerhardt took me out to dinner and last night we wrapped up the birthday week by going to the historic Admiral Theater here in our small town to see a magic show. I love magic, love trying to figure out how they do those tricks. Of course, I never do. And that's okay. That's what makes it magic.
In addition to partying my children made sure I had a great birthday. My son sent me a book to help me learn to be a wiser investor and my daughter, knowing I know longer have a veggie garden to play in, has bought seeds for all my favorite veggies and reserved several rows in her garden for me. What a clever gift!
This year I had much to celebrate. My children are all doing well, I have a great husband, and a wonderful family and the best friends on the planet. And I'm cancer free! So this birthday I felt especially blessed.
It's so easy to take our lives for granted. I don't want to do that, not for a minute. I want to appreciate every day God gives me here and to make every day count. This birthday is my new year and I'm going into it gratefully. And with much celebration and lots of cupcakes. (And, after eating all those cupcakes... some dieting!)
How about you? How do you like to celebrate? If it's with cake and ice cream, you have my permission. Save a piece for me!