Wednesday, November 19, 2014

39: Best Birthday Ever?

I know, I know. I've been talking about my birthday a lot. Maybe too much.

As I look back on it though, I have to say: it really was perhaps the best birthday I have ever had. Okay, no, Wynton didn't show up at my door, but otherwise this one tops all. This isn't about bragging about all the things I 'did', it's about how I felt.

I mean, perhaps it is a little sad that Wynton didn't show up...but you get the idea. :) He and Lisa showed up when I needed someone to show me how to find joy again, and that is what made those meetings so impactful on me.

Birthday Roses From Sarah, Bob, Lana and Buffy. :)

The top reason this birthday was so fantastic:

I spent the entire month of October celebrating LIFE. So many of my birthdays over the past few years have been tinged with sadness--sadness over not being married, over not having a child, over not being healthy, over not having things I so want in life.

This year, I felt fully able to celebrate all of my incredible blessings. My life feels full and vibrant. It feels full of love and stability in relationships. It feels full of family that loves me and friends who are amazing. It feels full with two puppies that I adore.

I didn't focus on what I 'don't have'. At all.

That, in and of itself, was a huge victory for me.

I just embraced the dancing light that I do have.


But then, the joys just kept piling on.

I dyed my hair blue and made my 39th birthday wish to raise $3900 for Dr. ANS. I felt energized, alive, passionate, and empowered by this impactful campaign. I felt humbled and overwhelmed by the donations and support that came flooding in. 

I Am Spoiled

On my birthday I took phone calls; I opened mail; I received gifts and flowers; I went OUT to dinner with Mom and Jeannine; I ordered a glass of wine for the first time in 17 years; I got carded at the restaurant. It was a wonderful day.

We went for a Fall drive.

We went out to brunch as a big family--Dad, Abbie, Mom, Jeannine and me. Together. All of us. Dad and Abbie spoiled me with special gifts. Abbie even dyed part of her hair blue too.

I got boots. The big tall kind that make me feel like a million bucks.

I savored every moment of being with those I love, hearing from those I love, and enjoying the activities I could engage in that I hadn't been able to do before. And wearing my boots with a dress.

I had a Celebration of Life party at the Spa with a group of fantastic women. One of my friends surprised me by secretly paying for my spa treatment. We had food and wine and pampering and laughter.

I felt alive.

And just as I thought the month was a wrap, that really, things couldn't get any better, we travelled to Hopkins and got the news that Dr. ANS expects me to get better and better and better.

Besides the love in my life, that is undeniably the best gift I could have received. 

The next day, my best friend won a caregiver of the year award. 

And scattered in between all of these big, huge moments I had a birthday lunch with Rebekah, a concert outing to see Brian Stokes Mitchell (and Lisa and Brianna, of course!),  a lunch out with Mom and Barbara, and dinner out on the Inner Harbor with Jess. My friend, Emily, adopted a baby on the same day I got my news from Hopkins. I'll never forget Kai's Gotcha Day!

Love the Vase and Butterflies Too!

I suppose it's no wonder November finds me feeling a little bit tired. October was a pretty busy month--physically and emotionally! But oh, so very worth it.

I'm starting to plant the seedlings now for how I most want to celebrate next year. How can I make it the most meaningful? Mom will be turning 70 and I will be turning 40, and I want us to make sure we take time to pause and celebrate LIFE again.

Thank you to everyone who made my birthday such a wonderful one in so many ways! 

I have my pile of cards ready to read. Over and over. Whenever I need a reminder of what really matters in this world.



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