Every year loved ones ask me what special thing I’m going to do for my birthday. I usually ask them the same question on their birthdays. (You probably get asked the same thing on your birthday too.) Some years I feel like I need to go somewhere, do something… different than the normal day-to-day. And that was my first thought when I was thinking about my birthday this year, to go somewhere. But I had a feeling that what I would need and what our family would really need that day would be to simply just be home. And I was right. We did so much running around last week, more than usual and then our market day ended up being another very emotional one for me. So what I really needed on Sunday was a healing home day. A day to let my nervous system relax and to be with my family. Last week I told Jeff that for my birthday I wanted to have a “home projects day.” We’ve had a long list of projects around the house that have been getting put off and had been hanging over us. We ended up getting some of them crossed off our list yesterday and it felt great.
My mom was the first to call and wish me Happy Birthday in the morning. My whole life my mom has always loved to be the first one to do that for my sister and I on our birthdays. Then she precedes to tell us the story of our birth. It’s a tradition I enjoy because it always makes me feel so loved. When Bracken woke up I was on the phone with my mom and told him she had just sang me Happy Birthday. Bracken started crying. I thought it was because he was tired and hadn’t gotten enough sleep since we had such a long day the day before (and I’m sure that was a big part of it.) But then, through tears, he expressed that he had wanted to sing me Happy Birthday. So Jeff and Bracken sang me Happy Birthday while he was still crying a bit through the whole song (which honestly sounded pretty darn cute) and then that cheered him up a bit. We hung up the birthday banner. I felt spoiled by the delicious meals that Jeff made throughout the day (but I feel that way a lot, he’s a really good cook.) Bracken got out a candle for me and decided he wanted one too and that Jeff needed one as well. I ended up hauling firewood for awhile, with Bracken playing near me and Jeff finishing a project in his shop. Bracken found a piece of twine on the ground and announced that he was making me a birthday present. He wove some flowers into the twine and then hung it on the garden gate. It was very sweet. Later I spent Bracken’s entire nap time reading my book, which was a wonderful gift to myself. My cousin surprised me and called. Every facebook message and comment on my blog made me smile (Thank you!) Hearing the voices of loved ones on the phone and being with my two loves at home were the greatest gifts of my birthday. With each familiar voice on the other line, I felt deeply grateful for that sound. I really needed to be surrounded with that love yesterday. Last night I walked over to my bookshelf and got out the ‘To My Daughter, With Love: A Mother’s Memory Book’ that my mom gifted me years ago. I read it aloud to Bracken, showing him pictures of his great grandma and telling him the stories my mom wrote in the book. He giggled and giggled when I read the part that I went through a cross eyed stage when I was a baby, he thought that was so funny. It was good medicine for my heart to read through it and I thought perhaps it would be a good tradition to start, to read it every year on my birthday.
There were a few mentions that this is now the last year of my twenties. I joked with my dad that I’d have to hurry and get all the “partying” out of my system before I turned thirty. But really, I got tired of that when I was a teenager. By the time I turned twenty I was already done with partying. I’d rather be gardening. Or knitting.