For several years, I didn’t celebrate my birthday. I was indifferent about marking the day. While I didn’t judge anyone else for celebrating their birthday, it seemed like a pointless endeavor for me.
But in the last couple of years, my mindset around celebrating my birthday has changed. What I once thought of as no big deal, has now become a time to celebrate.
I’ve spoken to several people who feel as I used to, that once you hit a certain age, there is no need to observe birthdays anymore. Or, they didn’t want to be the center of attention, which I can also relate to, but I am overcoming, I think.
How I have come to celebrate birthdays doesn’t involve either of these. I don’t mark the passing of time. I honor the person I was, the person I am, and the person I am growing into. The ever-evolving and changing person who I am, dare I say, proud of (at least most of the time!). Birthdays are not about getting older, they are about stepping into and fully owning every part of me.
My celebrating doesn’t require other people to acknowledge me. It is about me having my own back, supporting myself, and providing myself with validation from within. These are things I am still working on every day. It is hard to keep myself from wanting (needing) external validation, but I am learning that relying on it won’t get me to where I want to be.
Of course, I love it when people express appreciation for what I create and share, but I don’t want to rely on that as a motivator because I know it is not predictable. People might not like what I have to say, and that’s okay, too. I, of course, do not agree with everyone, or agree with everything the people I like say, so why would I expect others to agree with everything I have to say? It is natural for some people to not like me.
So, this is what I celebrate on my birthday. This ever-evolving human who is messy and creative and smart and thoughtful and, and, and…