I recently had a birthday. What we so looked forward to as children, or when we reached 18…25…30, simply isn’t as exciting anymore.
There is a very simple reason (or two). First, each advancing birthday candle reminds one of our mortality. Second, and most important to me is, in my mind I don’t feel much older than I did when I was 20 or 40. Except for some more life lessons along the way, I don’t think I’ve changed my thought processes all that much.
What changes, I’ve found, is I don’t quite have the stamina I once did. My knees and hips remind me of that. I’ve discovered that “bedtime” really means bedtime anymore; I can’t dance the night away until 2 in the morning (but I’d like to!). I’ve always treasured certain people and experiences, but I do that even more as the candles add up. I don’t take the good stuff for granted.
I had a very nice birthday. My son and daughter-in-law in Black Hawk insisted I come out. (I also find I get more tired driving than I once did). My daughter-in-law’s mother and I are only a week apart in age, so we celebrated by going to a lovely restaurant for a great meal (prime rib can’t be equaled). On the drive back from Johnson’s Siding, we saw several deer along the way. My son wasn’t too thrilled, as they wanted to cross, but there again, I savored seeing those beautiful creatures.
My daughter-in-law made her first quilt (for me!), and it’s beautiful. I loved the stargazer lily plant, and the cards, etc. But, as I told them, what I really prize is their company and affection. Gifts are wonderful, but hugs keep you warmer.
Once home, I talked to my daughter and other son, a couple of other relatives, my grandchildren in Minnesota and Nevada, and a friend. It’s a nice feeling to be able to touch base with people who remember I had a birthday. The cats were happy I was home (but they don’t give gifts).
My actual birthday started with a 7 a.m. phone call from my goddaughter. A co-worker brought some neat snacks. My daughter’s gifts arrived, and I loved them. One is a Claddagh ring…an Irish tradition, and the symbol represents love, heritage, and peace. What a thoughtful gift!
I was also inundated with Facebook wishes from friends and family. For one who doesn’t do much “Facebooking,” I was touched.
It was a wonderful weekend and my actual birthday–which included a night meeting to cover–wasn’t bad.
Looking back over the “many” years of birthdays, I don’t remember many specifically, except when I was young. I remember birthday parties as a kid. The senior prom was on my birthday. I recall a few very special gifts along the line. But somehow they all sort of blend together.
Who knows, this birthday may eventually blend in, too, but I was touched by the many caring thoughts. As noted, I treasure connections.
My daughter-in-law commented that July, too, is a big birthday month. It’s my son’s birthday, and grandson Zane’s birthday, as well as her dad’s and step-dad’s birthdays. I should come out. Sounds like a plan.
Granddaughter Brooke’s “golden” birthday was on May 9, when she turned nine. She’ll no doubt remember that one.
Birthdays should always be celebrated…not because we’re another year older, but because we’re in touch with people we love.
Add another candle to the cake…