To say I have an unconventional view on birthdays and turning another year older is an understatement. I’m not implying that I need gifts or sashes that scream BIRTHDAY QUEEN but I do love an opportunity for a gathering with frien
ds and family in the name of a special event.
As a child, birthdays had cake and ice cream, a couple of party games, and plenty of time to open presents. Family was present and for a moment we stopped and honored the act of growing a year older.
In high school, there may have been birthday captures. You know the ones. Your friends “break” into your house and take you out to breakfast long before the sun comes up. College birthdays involved a different kind of celebration. Mine had people out to dinner at the fancies place in Chico: The Olive Garden. Followed by drinks at a house party.
Twenties and post college life never stopped a birthday in my book. But they took new turns, wine tasting in Napa or chance for other group activities. My favorite birthday in my twenties was my 25th! I had a Wig & Karaoke Party. That’s me. In the mullet.
That party was awesome. But maybe a story for another time. At that time, turning 25 was a big deal, still is. It marked a quarter century of my life. At that moment life was amazing. I had a career that was what I went to school for, a reasonably priced apartment in an affluent neighborhood, and a black lab who was just shy of 1 year that was successfully potty trained. It’s the small things.
I didn’t mind turning 25. Just like I didn’t mind every single year that came after. Just like I don’t mind turning 30. I’m actually looking forward to it. Yes, my view on birthdays may be different than others. Birthdays and turning older is a privilege that is not given to many people. Most, but not many. Some but not all. Birthdays, no matter the age, will never give me heart palpitations or have me question why I’m turning older and if I’ve accomplished enough for this stage in my life.
I don’t question them because unlike those who have passed, I will always have the opportunity to pursue a passion, a hair brained idea, or even an unfinished to do list. Turning older is the gift. Adding experiences and making memories.
Here’s to aging.Here’s to checking a new box. Here’s to growing older. Without it, not much would happen. We can’t stay 5 forever.