My heart friend is having a birthday tomorrow and a few of us were able to meet for lunch today to celebrate Sara's presence in our lives. As a fifty something woman, I find it more important than ever to remember birthdays and the special people each day represents.
My group of friends from Druid Hills High School and I really did it up right last year when we all turned fifty. The first thing we did was we decided that we would celebrate each birthday throughout the years with balloons, bells and whistles! Then we planned a fiftieth birthday trip to visit one of the group in Colorado. While there, we went horseback riding in the Rockies and took numerous mountain hikes through the countryside. Then when our last friend in our group of eight had her fiftieth in December 2008, we decided that we would do it all again this year for our fifty-first. What a great idea! And so in March, 2009, we began again with Mary's birthday celebration. And the plan is to do the same thing again for our fifty-second, our fifty-third and so on! NO telling what we'll do for our sixtieth!
In Henri Nouwen's book HERE AND NOW, he teaches us why birthday parties are so significant. "Birthdays need to be celebrated. I think it is more important to celebrate a birthday than a successful exam, a promotion, or a victory. Because to celebrate a birthday means to say to someone: 'Thank you for being you.' On a birthday, we do not say: 'Thanks for what you did, or said, or accomplished.' No, we say: 'Thank you for being born and being among us.'" Nicole Johnson agrees when she says: "This is the heartbeat of celebrating friendships and family. Rejoicing, honoring, applauding, commending, saluting, toasting the wonderful people in our lives."
So, here's to you on your special day wherever it might fall on the calendar.