Saturday, August 13, 2016

On My Mind, Day 6: Celebration

Today will be a short post because it is my birthday and I am still celebrating with Mark Johnson and his daughter Zoe. I turned 45 years old today. When you are younger, each birthday feels like an exciting milestone. But as we get older, a lot of adults are no longer enthusiastic about their birthday. Maybe it is because they are afraid of getting older, or maybe it is because they don't want to make a fuss anymore.

I am not one of those people. I love celebrating my birthday. No matter where I have been in my life, in the best and worst of times, when I wake up every August 13th it is my day. And everything just seems a little brighter. I think it is really important to celebrate your birthday, no matter what. It is the one day a year that acknowledges your creation. The day you were born onto this planet. And that alone is an awe-inspiring event.

This year was a really special celebration. We had an amazing day. Mark Johnson put together a "build your own birthday" surprise with a series of envelopes labeled from 1 to 7. And Zoe Johnson decorated all of the envelopes with colored patterns like hearts, stripes and polka dots. For each number, there were multiple envelopes to choose from. At each decision point during the day, I got to pick from one of the numbered envelopes and that is where we would go next. I have never had anyone go through that much effort to plan a birthday party for me.

We have been all over Cleveland today, from a cozy breakfast at Crocker Park, to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, to the Buddha Room at the Cleveland Museum of Art, to a little walk and shopping in Coventry and then dinner at my favorite Mexican restaurant. They had more things planned, but we started to run out of time. And some of the activities, like watching the sunset at the park, were thwarted by the rainy, humid weather.

I am truly overwhelmed by what Mark Johnson did for me today. And how much fun the three of us had hanging out together. It is one of the best birthdays that I can remember. As if I wasn't already convinced how amazing this man is and how much I love him, this pretty much sealed the deal.

So I guess my message for today is simple as well. Take time to celebrate your birthday every year. And I hope that you have at least one person in your life who will make you feel as special as Mark Johnson did for me today. We are all here on this earth for a purpose. To live freely, to love deeply, to laugh out loud and to take in as much beauty as we possibly can.

I got to do all of those things today. And I still have a piece of cheesecake waiting for me.

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