My birthday is in almost a week. I don't know why but I'm kind of dreading it. Somehow it seems to sneak up on me but this year it feels even more so. I'm a planner and I get really anxious about dates. That's goofy huh? What do I mean?
I'm the kind of girl that likes to celebrate her anniversary on the actual date of her anniversary and valentines on valentines day. So my birthday is kind of the same thing... it's like I have to do everything I've ever wanted to do on my actual birthday. It's quite exhausting actually... and also embarrasing to confess.
Now truth be told I have gotten better. I need to give myself a little credit. I've learned to relax and unwind and spread out the joy and fun for more than just a day. I'm good about waiting til the week-ends or a better time to celebrate if the "real" day doesn't work.
I guess part of it is it's kind of like a coupon that you can only use for one day. It's the "I can do anything and practically get away with murder" day of the year. Or maybe it's just that I feel like I can demand attention from the people I love the most and wear an "It's all about me" smile for the day. Did I mention I like attention....
Okay, so I'm being a little over the top. Fortunately for me God doesn't let me get too consumed with myself. Often on days of importance and significance something goes wrong... and at times... really wrong.
I have had Easter "ruined" as well as Libby's birthday, Samuel's birthday, Mike's birthday,the twins birthday, Valentine's Day and an anniversary due to hospitalizations. Vehicles have broken down. I've gotten a severe burn on a Valentine's Day and also was in hard labor for several days... also on a Valentine's Day. I have been violenty ill on my birthday. I have gotten into heated arguments with family and I have cried myself to sleep on my birthday.
You know what the problem is? The problem is this: That somehow I think that everything is going to magically be different on "this" day. As if somehow if it's Valentine's Day everything is going to be sweet, happy and rosy all day... and significantly romantic. I have had countless Anniversaries (okay, you can't say countless if you've only been married almost 8 years) get flushed down the tubes. I remember one year I was so depressed because Mike was working several jobs and he worked our whole anniversary... from 6:30 in the morning til 11:30 at night. I was so upset. Just because it's my birthday doesn't mean that all will go as planned.
Oh to let go. Let it go. Kids will throw up. People will disagree. I might even get insulted or punched or kicked in the face (on accident, by one of my kids)on my birthday. Because honestly, it's just another day. I am a birthday celebrater. I love birthdays. Not just mine... but anyone around me. My husband and children's birthdays are so important. I feel for Mike every year because his birthday (March 10) comes a few days after my sister's passing(March 7th)... So every year I'm very emotional and it's hard for me to concentrate on his birthday and it means so much to me because He is my love and my best friend. And I want it to be special. And he is so sweet and kind and focused on me and I want him to be blessed.
And with my children I want them to feel special and significant and loved... because they are. I want everything to go right for them.
I have come to grips with the fact that life is disappointing and more often than not it won't go how we predict or want or plan for it to go. And it's okay . Instead of trying so hard to do every thing I've ever dreamed about doing (or that pops into my head at any given moment) I try to pick a thing or two that I'd like to try to make happen and be flexible about the rest of it. I also try to just let the day play out how it will even if it means that one thing doesn't happen. And I've learned that you can turn anything into a special day, special place... based on your attitude. Learning to laugh at myself and at times my circumstances has been challenging but as I've grown in it I find that I'm a lot happier... and a lot nicer to be around.
And when you have low to no expectations you won't get disappointed and you will also enjoy the things that do occur. I have learned to be thankful for the little things that happen and not upset about one specific thing that did not take place or the weird, crazy unplanned things that popped into my day.
Yeah, I'm weird. I know.
I think everyone though has the desire of wanting to know that they are loved, valued, appreciated and that they make a difference. So be reminded of this. Your birth was not an accident. God knew and planned YOU even before the foundations of the world... your very existence. He knew the color of your hair and eyes. He knew and made you the way you are. And He even had your day go the exact way He planned. So embrace this day... birthday or not. Enjoy and savor the sweet things. Spit out the pits... and let go of the hurts, disappointments, and unmet expectations... Hey, we're not in Heaven yet. One day we will be... but til then be reminded that earth is not our Home.
So, all that said, if you see me next Friday (June 3rd) I will officially be 31... and I will be enjoying free pancakes at IHOP... and a free Starbucks beverage... Mmmm... maybe I won't be so blue after all...