I like to think of birthdays as something like the day you ‘level up’.
I’ve gone from Charmander to full blown Charizard, from Squirtle to Blastoise in what feels like the blink of an eye, and yet there is still so much more out there to learn.
For my birthday, I want to ask you to share choices you made that bought you happiness, success or peace in your life.
I would love to have comments of you expressing your own gratitude for yourself and your accomplishments…
We all need to be reminded of the good things we accomplish and the positive actions we make.
I turn 26 tomorrow.
A number which written down doesn’t seem like a lot at all and yet I find myself imagining that I’ll wake up looking like Melisandre from Game of Thrones but as the old lady she actually is rather than the young and beautiful woman the necklace enables her to be.
In my life I have experienced some really unusual/traumatic things which I think is why I strike people as being older than I am (not going there for this post). My history is not the norm and I really feel that this day is one where, more than any other, I should be able to say
“well done mate, you’ve absolutely killed it and it’s amazing what you’ve achieved”.
You know what – I really have achieved.
I’ve spent most of my life attributing my successes to other people; to relatives, friends, teachers – any person who offered me some support, no matter how minor, along the road to becoming me.
I realised this year that IT WAS ME! (thank you counselling).
While I do remain very grateful to the people who have been there and taught me and supported me I finally see that they were a part of the story. The book lies with me.
I chose in my youth to make friends with the kids who didn’t have friends.
I chose every time my family moved house to make new friends anyway (even though it hurt a lot to be moved away from the friends I’d made in previous areas).
I chose to try and be good and not be too loud or disruptive at home and at school.
I chose to forgive people who wronged me, including the girl who gave me a sweet off the school bus floor so that everyone could laugh at the new kid with the weird accent, my face scarlet and blurry eyed.
I chose to read and create poetry to help with my grief. I was only seven.
I’d witnessed the darker side of life in my infancy.
I chose to see the reality of the countries I visited (Africa especially).
I chose to recognise my own privilege from a young age.
I chose to study and work hard.
I chose relationships too early and paid with my heart.
I chose experiences arguably above my age.
I chose to love people through their darkness.
I saw how the world was shaping us or more accurately breaking us.
I chose to devote my education to being able to have a career helping others; to make the world better.
I chose music as my other love and only in this last year did I finally learn to play an instrument fluidly (-ish).
I chose writing as my mistress and we create wild adventures regularly.I chose to keep going with my education even though I had just spent a year ‘off the rails’ following some dodgy relationship and negatively influential friendships.
I graduated from Aberystwyth University with a BSc in Psychology (2:1)
I have been a carer for the elderly.
I have supported adults with complex needs and multiple diagnoses.
I faced pregnancy discrimination and left a job once.
I chose to become a mother (that would need a whole other post to list what I’ve learned through this experience so far).
I have held the hands of scared people at the end.
I have heard the stories of lives lived through old wrinkled lips.
I have seen the adversity that others face while still managing to smile at strangers.
I know the strength it takes for all of us to engage with the demands made every day.
We carry heart aches, lost hopes and new hopes, dreams, fears and endless amounts of ideas about who we should be or aren’t, should have or don’t.
How often do we sit and think about how much we have survived and achieved through our struggles?
Brighten my birthday with your successes and happiness.
I can’t wait to read your comments during my birthday tomorrow.
With love in abundance,