The thing about birthdays I have learned over my forty-four years… celebrations don’t just happen like they do in movies or my favourite television sitcom. There are times I recall the magic feeling I had as a kid, waking up on my birthday knowing that today was MY day. I got to be the one who was special on that day. Remember all the affirmations you would get on your birthday? Between the birthday wishes and extra hugs and love from my parents. Even my friends at the time, being we all felt that birthday magic would go out of their way to be a little extra nicer to me... but just that one day. So, of course, I loved my birthday.
I don’t believe I am the only one who noticed the loss of birthday magic over the years. It was bound to happen. And when you add the expectation that we are supposed to dislike ageing, the idea of celebrating begins to wane.
For me, it all started when I moved out of the house - away from my parents who were the root of all feelings of magic - and out of grade school where there is no teacher and their birthday calendar doing their part to spread the knowledge that May 7 was MY day.
The thing is, we ALL have that ONE day we claim as ours. Not to get all humble - but my birthday is just as amazing as yours. With all the obligations and responsibilities we acquire over the years, the time and effort to help pitch in and cheers our friends and family seem to get lost. If any celebrations are going to happen, it is going to be by design, and we are the designers of our life. This awareness has shown me that if I want to re-live some birthday magic - I need to be responsible for hiring and booking the magician!
Planning. Yup. Life doesn’t just happen.
I step up for myself and create a day, weekend, hell, a week, of special events, activities and things that I WANT TO DO. I plan my party magic.
What do you do to celebrate your day of birth? I would hope you set aside time to do something that you enjoy, giving you an opportunity to fill your well to take on the rest of the year. I think it would be lovely if we all pampered ourselves a little more, so we turn that loving energy into those around us.
I had some fun coming up with random birthday celebration ideas:
- spa day
- laser tag with your kids… got no kids? play laser tag with someone else’s kids?… don’t like kids, play laser tag with other kid-like adults like yourself?
- garden naked
- watch a movie alone
- rent a whole movie theatre and watch a movie alone… or invite your closest friends, neighbourhood and people you meet on the street?
- eat cake for breakfast, lunch and supper?
- two spa days
- run that marathon you have been working so hard at?
- run a block to Starbucks for your free birthday beverage?
- turn off all your tech (phones, computers) and pretend you are on a retreat where no one can reach you, sit down and listen to the quiet
- arrange to meet and get a hug from your favourite celebrity?
- fly to the north pole so that you can say you have been there?
- a week of spa days
- book a full day off of work and any obligations - then make NO plans and wander around your hometown like a tourist taking in the sights and talking to people you meet - maybe even get selfies with each one and have that collection of to remind you of all there is outside of your little bubble world.
- visit a pet shelter and cuddle cats and puppies
Okay, I could go on. But I hope you get the gist and are inspired to bring the magic back to your day of birth. Open your digital calendar or paper day planner and schedule in some fun. You are the author of your life. So I challenge you to make joy, wonder and meaning appear to your day.