I turned 41 in February. It was probably my best birthday ever. It had been years since I really focused on myself. Giving myself permission to have an awesome birthday really filled me with joy.
I didn’t do anything extravagant. But I *did* do things *I* wanted to do. I went years sacrificing what I wanted. In fact, it was so long I became disconnected with myself. Celebrating my birthday doing things I enjoy with people I love really helped me see myself again.
What made it an awesome birthday?
Giving. I kicked it off with a week of giveaways here at Rambling Rach. Giving feels good! I shared some of my favorite things, mostly out of my own pocket: coffee, pizza, coloring books with curse words, psychic readings, a pink glittery logo tshirt, even my favorite sex toy. My friends donated a psychic reading and chakra cleansing. Spreading cheer to other people makes me happy.
Friends morning until night. I started the day with a coffee date at Starbucks in Target (as this friend and I have been doing almost weekly for years). She brought me sparkly nailpolish I tried out right away! I ended my birthday with 10 friends at the local brewery. It was a mix of people I see all the time and those I rarely have time to connect with. Old friends and new-ish. There was talking and so much laughing. We closed the place out. In between I had calls, texts and messages from friends who live far away.
I spent years isolated, first because my now ex-husband wasn’t social and then because I was consumed with motherhood. I stopped trying to make birthday plans for myself years ago. Making and renewing friendships has been a huge part of the last year and celebrating my birthday with them made me so happy.
I adulted. I switched phone carriers, cutting my monthly bill way more than in half. I’d been putting it off for a while because it’s a pain, but I’m glad I made the move. In the process, I switched from an android phone to iPhone, which I’d wanted to do for a while, but also put off because I was hesitant to learn a new format. It was easy and I LOVE my iPhone. I almost bought this lighted phone case on my birthday, but decided to research it a bit more and totally forgot until just now. Anyone have one?
I also made some neglected doctor appointments. What better way to celebrate my birthday than by taking care of my finances and health? Celebrating yourself and self care comes in many different forms. Some isn’t fun, but it’s still important.
Epic weekend. One of the very shiniest of silver linings of my world pretty much falling part, is the resurgence of a friendship that has been very important to me since I was 14. My bestie boo. We never stopped being friends, but there were many years we were hardly in contact because navigating adult life got in the way. But now we talk pretty much every day again and tell each other things like, “You are so good for my soul.” So, of course, I spent my birthday weekend with him and his boyfriend. It was filled with sleeping late, long talks, cocktails, an art exhibit, drag queens, dancing, brunch and laughter.
Between the week of blog giveaways and the weekend extravaganza, I stretched my birthday celebration out about ten days. I highly suggest extending your awesome birthday celebration! You’re worth it!
How can you have an awesome birthday?
- Make it about you. It sounds obvious, but my birthday wasn’t about me for decades. I tried to think of ways to celebrate that would be comfortable for my then-husband and special needs kiddo. This meant I usually did nothing. It’s your day. Do what you want, even if that means hiring a sitter and running off on your own.
- Treat yourself how you’d treat someone you love on their birthday. You deserve the same level of enthusiasm and special treatment you give others!
- Plan in advance, but be flexible. Brainstorm some ideas of what you might like to do. Planning and anticipating is a big part of the fun! But keep some flexibility in case you wake up just not feeling it. It’s your day, you can change your mind!
- Seriously, do what you want! Cake for breakfast? Sure! A tiara all day? Yup! Red lipstick at 8 a.m.? Yes! Obviously, those are *me* things, but you do whatever makes you happy.
- Reflect on how awesome you are. You’ve kept it together another year! That’s amazing on it’s own. Good job!
- Let someone else plan. If you just aren’t able to celebrate yourself just yet, ask someone you love and trust to take over. Let them plan a celebration for you, then enjoy it guilt free.
I let too many birthdays slip by without enjoying them. I’m done with that. I hope you will be, too.
I’d love to hear about your most awesome birthday!