How are you celebrating your Birthday? A child's Birthday is always celebrated to the tee. Lots of friends and family over, cake and food galore, and stacks of presents. It's lots of fun. When did the fun, happy birthdays stop for you? Have they stopped, or are they still super fun? At what age would you consider an age when Birthdays are no longer necessary?
My birthday was yesterday, and I am no longer wanting gifts. We just went through our decluttering stage last year, moving from a 5-bedroom house to a 2-bedroom apartment condo. So we really don't have anywhere to put things, and at this stage in our lives, if we want something, we can just buy it.
As we grew up, as children, it was always our Mom that arranged the birthday. In my case, I was born on my parents' anniversary, so I always had to go out for dinner with them so rather than having my melodious siblings sing Happy Birthday, I got the restaurant waiters. It was their job to make you happy. As we get older, we expect that someone else will take on the task of planning and preparing for our birthday celebration.
What if we change our thinking and decide that we are going to change the direction? If we want a big, fun, joyous occasion, then it is our job to plan it. Our lives could end tomorrow, so accept responsibility for one day a year when you decide you are going to celebrate your life.
On my Birthday yesterday, my granddaughter said to me, but Grampa, where are all your presents? I said you are my presents. Just you guys coming to celebrate my birthday with me is fantastic. It's all I need. Rylie, the older of the two, started talking about the stories I used to tell her when she was young. I used to say that I was driving down the road, and I saw this young girl, and she was walking with a giraffe on the sidewalk, and the story would go on and on.
Rylie wandered off and asked my wife for some paper, crayons, and scissors. Meanwhile, Summer Brooklyn, I, and the cats broke out the ping pong balls. I have a box of 12 orange balls that are a lot of fun to play with in this apartment with the wood floors. It is mind-boggling for these children to see me throw the whale box of 12 ping pong balls at them. I love seeing their faces. And the cats go wild, leaping in the air to try to catch them.
A friend of mine recently said to me that she had planned a birthday party for one of her friends, she invited them for dinner. She said the meal was good, but the best part was the conversation. That is what I like the best of birthdays or any gathering for that matter: just the conversation. It's often great fun to have a conversation. Sometimes, not as much when there are hard conversations to be had. But a Birthday party is meant to be fun.
As my daughter was packing up the baby and getting ready to leave, Rylie was still working feverishly to finish what she was working on. Lately, she has been making stories with paper, scotch tape, scissors, and crayons. She draws each room, then she makes a paper doll, and she creates doors for the doll to through to get to each room. It was time for the girls to pack up so they could go home. It was a school night, and they had to get home and go to bed.
At this point, their Mom, my daughter, was ready to go, and Rylie finally finished what she was working on. She gathered up all her papers and put on her shoes, and we all headed down the hall to the elevator. I asked Rylie about her drawings and stories, and she said it was a boy, this time wearing all blue. When we got to the lobby, Rylie handed me all the papers and said Happy Birthday, Grampa, this story is for you. When I got back up to the apartment, I realized that she had drawn all the rooms in the apartment and had created a paper doll of me. There were doors into each room that she had drawn.
That moment of her handing the story to me melted me. She had been working so hard on this story at our kitchen island. She truly made my day. What she had done was out of pure love. This touched me so much.
This story of my birthday has covered a lot of topics, a child's love, and balls… no, birthday celebrations. It's time to make your own fun. Want to have a party, plan it. Invite people and make your own fun. You might be thinking that it is a selfish gesture to plan your own party. Is it selfish to think about yourself? I'd say no. It's an opportunity to celebrate who you are and what you have accomplished. This story represents the idea of self-care, something very important in this world today!
I'm sure that everyone can learn from this story and find a way to make their own fun and be comfortable with themselves. After all, isn't that the point - finding joy in life and celebrating each day? So go ahead, plan your own birthday party and make it special! Who knows what memories you will create?
Plus, as my story has shown, even little things can add up to something huge - like a child's pure love for their grandparent. Let yourself be touched by the beauty of everyday moments, from a bright sunny day to someone's kind words. We can all learn something from each other and grow together!
Finally, don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, take risks, and try something new! You never know what you might discover and enjoy. So go ahead and spread love, happiness, and kindness - that is the true spirit of self-care.