I like to approach my birthday both thoughtfully and spontaneously.
For example, I evaluate each action for its potential to make me happy or to add something valuable to the world. So I didn’t make my bed today because I really hate doing it and I don’t think the world really cares whether I do or not. The other 364 days, I will make the bed (or some semblance thereof) because it reminds me that orderliness in actions aids orderliness of thought. As a writer, I need to think in an orderly fashion at least some of the time.
I try on every birthday to cleanse myself of any lingering resentment toward anyone with whom I can still make amends. Today I will try to call a friend with whom I have communicated poorly in the last year.
I have sent a message to my Facebook world reminding us all that there may very well be too many guns and two little empathy among us, remembering Dylan Hocksley, whose birthday also would have been today, had he not been killed so many months ago at the Sandy Hook shooting. For the sake of his parents, the children who survived that day, and all our children, I hope we all try harder to find solutions.
And for myself, because I can and I know I am fortunate, I have laughed over my son’s birthday greeting with a real-life buffalo photo, thanked my husband for the beautiful flowers, a lovely license plate cover, and the thoughtful gesture of buying pretty duct tape to cover my spare car key (the last two things so far from his own taste and so perfectly mine.) Now I will see a funny movie and have ice cream and think of all the many ways I am lucky and all the wonderful friends who have reminded me today of that fact.
Love to all. Because that IS all I really need.
Happy International Women’s Day! And bless the spirit of the woman who gave birth to me.