Today I turn 34. I worked until 11:30Pm last night and came home worn out, tired, and drained. The household was asleep. My husband had the place clean, and left presents out for me to discover. His thoughtful did not go unnoticed. I was appreciative for where I was, who I am, and for the people in my life that I’ve created in my 34 years. That is perhaps the best birthday present, to be grateful and content with where you are and for the totality of your choices.
My tradition is to spend the day with myself. I reflect, set goals, revisit goals, plan, think, and work on projects I want. I exercise, write, shower, and watch a movie alone. I’ll even do a load of laundry and straighten up the house, because having a bit of time to do that makes me happy. Then I pick up my kids and as a family we go eat, and my mom will have her famous pistachio cake for us to eat. As a get older I find simplicity perfect and wanted. I know exactly what I like and what I need.
Last year I was 40 weeks pregnant on my birthday. The year before I was sick. Today I am a little tired, but I feel great. Optimistic. Comfortable with my age. Most importantly, I feel like I’ve learned so much and have a ton of great things to look forward to in the coming years. Getting older isn’t so bad when you do it right.
In my 33rd year, I:
-had my 3rd baby. A boy, 10 lbs. 3 oz, in an all-natural birth
-lost my weight and now weigh less than I did in high school
-became a vegetarian, and 70% vegan
-won an organizing award
-attended an organizing conference
-hosted many parties, including birthday parties, a Halloween party, my dad’s retirement party, and my sister’s bridal shower.
-read a lot
-finished writing projects
-learned a lot
-had a great year with my family. Lots of time and love with my kiddos and husband.
– trip to Mexico, camping in the Sequoias, and a weekend retreat on the coast in Northern California.
-I visited my 91 year old grandmother every month
-I have parents who are still alive and healthy, and see them somewhat frequently
-I’ve had a bit of a professional identity crisis, but I’m working through it. I don’t have all the answers, but I’m moving toward what makes me happy and feeling accomplished.
My goals for my 34th year (just a few…I have a long list!):
- health (workout 5x/week, vegetarian, stay around 133 lbs, eat natural and unprocessed foods primarily)
- time with family
- strong boundaries
- make decisions without guilt
- learn new things, and focus on one area per month
- write 5 first drafts
- read prolifically
- help my kids find what they enjoy learning, and to teach them new skills, nurturing their interests
- be creative
- stay focused
- be kinder to others
- nurture friendships and relationships with people (family, friends, husband, children
We also plan to go to Europe this summer, possibly Washington DC, camping, and lots of times with family and friends. I’m so looking forward to it.