I am all about celebrating my birthday – and not just for the day but for the whole month. It’s something I happily get from my mother! It is something that simply speaks to my soul. It hasn’t always been this way, though.
Earlier this month, I crafted a cake for a lady who was celebrating her birthday. I was so inspired because she orders her own cake and plans her own party. She doesn’t think she is too old, unlike the way most of us treat our birthdays. Really, who has ever ordered their own birthday cake and planned a party?! When I delivered the cake to her, I could tell she was surrounded by people she loved and who loved her.
In that moment looking at such joy over a birthday, I realized how I had accepted the shying away from birthday celebrations as normal in our world. There are quite a few people that don’t believe in celebrating or don’t even want to celebrate their birthdays. Based on what I’ve seen both as a friend and as a baker, I think this is true for most women.
While most women don’t celebrate their birthdays for a variety of reasons, the motivation is usually the same: we are struggling with where we are in life. Some think they are too old, and others aren’t where they want to be, and they possibly haven’t accomplished their dreams. So we take it those frustrations on ourselves because we don’t think we deserve to celebrate.
I remember my 40th birthday, one of the few I actually didn’t want to celebrate…
I’m no exception to falling in this trap despite how much I love celebrating. For my 40th birthday, I even told Jimmy I didn’t want presents and I didn’t want to do anything. You know I must have definitely been struggling to say that and he knew I was upset and it ended up just being a mess. I had no right to be upset with Jimmy – he did what said and he did take me out shopping. I really just wanted to be surprised with one gift.
As I think back to that birthday, I realize my desire to not celebrate was rooted in the fact that I wasn’t where I wanted to be in my career and Jimmy and I were at a rough spot. Jimmy and I were adjusting to a new place, he was working at a job a job he didn’t like and I was searching for a career that I loved. Celebrating didn’t fit with my mood at the moment but really, it’s what I think I probably needed.
This all seems like ages ago. Since then I have been all about celebrating my birthday – sometimes I make my own and sometimes my friends make my cake. I realize even though I am getting older, I need to proud of what I have accomplished and who I am as a person. I am wife to Jimmy, who is my world; a pup mom to Cashew, who we all know is just the cutest puppy ever; and I am a sister and friend. I am also the owner of a successful business, I am a baker, I lead some women’s group, I try to encourage other women a daily basis, and I am all about building a stronger community.
Am I perfect at any of these things? NOPE.
Some days I shine at one of these things, other days I shine at quite a few, and other days I completely fail at all of them. When I fail, like a throw-a-batch-of-cupcakes-away or get-mad-at-Jimmy kind of fail, I know there is tomorrow and I know that I can shine, bake an amazing cake, and sprinkle some kindness to others.
God has given me so much to thankful and a life that I truly love, so why not celebrate it?
So if you are struggling to celebrate your birthday let me know and I will help you plan something fun. Even if it means something as simple as a date night with your spouse. As women, we need to celebrate our birthdays and all that we accomplish. Give yourself a break and throw yourself a party. Even when things are rough, there is always something to celebrate!
And just in case you are wondering if I ever tell Jimmy not to do anything for my birthday anymore, he knows better! This year I turn 45 and we have had my birthday planned for months. Any guesses as to what we are doing?