Tag Archives: birthdays

It’s my birthday, and here’s what I really want

happy-birthday-cake-candle-celebrate-celebrating-1

Tomorrow, I turn 55. I can’t believe it’s been five years since I started my “50 thought on turning 50” blog post series, in which I noted that I might be 60 by the time I actually finish the list.  (My Ancestry DNA test came back and said I’m a hearty mix of Irish, Italian, and Procrastinator.)

I don’t mind aging. For me, the hardest part of having a birthday: the presents.

I’ve been told I’m a hard person to buy presents for because I don’t like to get presents. I’m swimming in stuff over here and despite a lot of effort to manage the clutter, it’s a never ending battle. Giving me gifts or knickknacks or books just adds to the stress. I change my mind a lot about where I shop, eat, or get my hair done, so people often spend money on gift certificates I’ll never use.

I know, I know. I sound ungrateful, but I’m really not. I appreciate that people care about me and want to show it on my birthday. And honestly, I’m not opposed to going out to dinner or receiving small gifts of things I really need or want (although right now, I don’t need or want much of anything).

So for those who can’t resist my “please don’t give me anything” plea, here is a list of ideas of things you can do for my birthday.

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50 thoughts on turning 50: #10 – I turn 50

Cary Grant Monkey Business meme with border

Well, folks, last Friday was the big day, the day I reached the top of the hill and started my slow decline down the other side.

Yup. I turned 50.

If I’m being honest, I haven’t had a single qualm about turning 50, although joking about it makes for some good column material. Each decade gets a little easier, and I feel a little more comfortable in my own skin.

For my birthday, darling husband and I spent the day at the Seneca Park Zoo and then went out to dinner with family. It was low key, relaxing and perfect.

Darling husband and I monkeying around at the zoo.

Darling husband and I monkeying around at the zoo.

In fact, as you can see from the photo, darling husband and I had a little fun at the zoo – you know, goofing around the way you can when you don’t care what anyone else thinks.

Which of course is one of the best things about growing older – feeling young without the maladjustment and near idiocy of youth. So here’s to being 50!

This post is part of my series, “50 thoughts on turning 50″. Read more here.

 

50 thoughts on turning 50: #3 The butterfly still flaps its wings

Butterfly in my backyard

When a butterfly slaps its wings in Brazil, there’s a tornado in Texas. Does that mean the butterfly shouldn’t fly?

I was having a conversation this week with a women who was telling me about her dream job. Not just a job, but a passion, the thing she’d like to do, in a perfect world, with no obstacles.

I won’t go into details, since I don’t think she expected to be the subject of a blog post. But in a nutshell, all of the pieces for what she wants to do are in place. Not just theory, in practice. She’s got things lined up and ready to go; all she has to do is pull the trigger and bam! She’s off and running.

And yet we talked for quite a long time about why she insists she can’t do it. For every obstacle she needs to consider, she already has a solution. Even if she only meets half of her goal, she’ll more than cover her costs and get to do something she really wants to do.

And yet there was something holding her back.

I was an outsider hearing the story for the first time, but I was struck by the similarity to some of my own dreams and plans, things I’ve thought about doing, wanted to do, and then didn’t do.

I had good reasons, just like this woman. At least, that’s what I thought. But when the layers were peeled back, the reality was that the only thing holding me back was me.

I’d say we don’t have the money, but every day people accomplish great things without money. I’d say I don’t have the time, but there’s always time for things we really want to do. I’d say I [insert excuse here] but in the end, all I had were excuses.

Because here’s the real reason I don’t do what I want to do: I don’t want to upset the apple cart. Continue reading