My birthday was this past weekend. I’m not going to tell you how old I am. But I have to say that I did stretch it out for a week. I didn’t have a big party—or demand cake. To be honest, I like ice cream better than cake.
I stretch it out for the following three reasons:
I love to touch base with friends over my birthday. Sometimes, with our busy lives, it’s easy for my friends and I not to connect but a few times during the year. My birthday is simply a good excuse to strengthen those ties and catch up with what’s been going on.
I like to give thanks for this life that I’ve had so far. When life comes at me hard, it’s easy to get caught up in a pity party or talk about how bad things are. Any time I give thanks, especially on my birthday, it moves me from a place of complaint to a place of gratitude for the way that God has worked in my life.
I like to remember other parts of my life besides work. It’s really easy to get so caught up in work that I forget that it’s not a means to an end. To use a cliché, no one will ever have on their tombstone the phrase “I wish I’d spent more time at work.” Instead, we want to be remembered for other parts of our lives like those friends and family we have. I’ve started taking my birthday (or the weekday before it) off so that I can focus on things I enjoy as well as time with friends and family.
This year, I had lunch with friends on Wednesday and Thursday. Then I took Friday off, lifted, wrote, and had lunch with my honey. Saturday, though a work day, also had some fun parts like going for a run and having supper with friends. Today, we plan on kayaking and meeting my parents for ice cream. A good time.
Birthdays serve as touchstones in our lives. They help us to give thanks for the incredible blessings in our lives. And yes, while I’ll look forward to a good party at my next milestone, I don’t need that to realize how much God loves this child of God.
How do you celebrate your birthday?