When you’re young, you can’t wait to have a party. It used to be all your friends at your house with party hats and games; today it’s Chucky Cheese or Rock Climbing parties.
When you’re a teen you often just go to the mall with some friends or hang at someone’s house for your birthday. Big shows of celebration of your day of birth are embarrassing.
When you’re in college, your birthday usually turns into a bender, with loud music and laughing, drunk friends playing beer pong or beer bags.
When you’re in your 20s and 30s you often have kids, so your idea of celebrating your birthday is having your parents babysit while you get a night out for dinner and/or a movie.
When you celebrate your birthday in your 40s or 50s, you’ve usually got a good group of friends around you, so you enjoy throwing a big bash at your house or at a friend’s house. You drink chocolate martinis and eat hors d’oeuvres. You play music from your teens and dance around the living room with a beer or a glass of wine.
When you head into your 60s, celebrating your birthday takes a different turn. Your birthday parties entail taking the family out to dinner for something “different” like hot wings or Thai, and you try not to think of how many years you’ve got left to sing “Happy Birthday.”
I’m not in my 70s yet, so I don’t know how I’ll spend them. I try and be a glass half full kinda girl, but when there are more years behind you than in front of you, that’s a hard task to keep.
Yet these birthdays are the most important. Because I’ll tell you one thing.
Another birthday means you’ve survived.
I’ve survived Cabbage Patch Kids, 8-Tracks, The Freddie, and Howdy Doody. I’ve survived 9/11, the impeachment of Nixon, and the death of Lynyrd Skynyrd. I celebrate being alive and full of love and hope, even in the face of runaway Twitter or bashing poor Charlie Brown tv shows.
I celebrate because I’m alive. Looking around me, that’s not always an easy thing to be.
So what does a 66-year-old do for their birthday?
How about sushi with my family then the grandkids over night then go to see Wreck It Ralph Wrecks the Internet tomorrow? That’s love, no matter how you celebrate it.
Celebrate YOUR birthday every year. Every day.
Make your heart happy.