Tomorrow I turn 39, and I approach this birthday with a full heart. Life looks different than it once did.
Mostly, I have finally come home to myself. Being in my skin is comfortable, relaxing even. And all that I do – the many roles I fill as wife, mother, coach, friend, and more – flows from that more settled place. While I am infinitely grateful for the ease I have discovered through my 30’s, it has come at a cost, as most things in life worth having do.
Take for instance the unfolding this morning.
Dear friends who are currently amidst an RV adventure in Colorado call to wish me a happy birthday. They mention that they have tickets to see Jason Mraz and Brett Dennen at Red Rocks tomorrow (on my birthday). My heart flips!
I didn’t make any birthday plans this year. Being settled, enjoying a sunset with my family and preparing for my daughter’s 2nd birthday the next day feels like enough. But, two of my favorite artists, loved ones and a bucket list venue…well, that is cause to get a possible spontaneous shift in plans into action!
I hop online and check out Stubhub and the airlines. We can get tickets to the show and flights on miles. My husband is in. We try on different possibilities for Lily – bring her to the concert or bring her and my mom to Denver and set them up in a hotel nearby. We decide that she’s better off without two plane rides in 12 hours, and my mom says she and my dad will have Lily at their house for the evening.
Everything seems to be working! The only detail that won’t fall into place is missing the early morning of Lily’s 2nd birthday, as we’d be flying back then.
I step away from my computer and phone for a breather from the adrenaline that’s now pulsing through my body. I settle onto my meditation cushion, light a candle and set my timer for 20 minutes. Inhaling…and exhaling…I let go.
As I come back into the presence of my office – the desk, the chair, the rug I am sitting upon – I feel more settled in my heart. And, I have a new perspective that feels both right and weighty.
I am not going to Red Rocks tomorrow. Daydreams of Brett Dennen belting out “Blessed” at sunset over the vast desert horizon fade.
Rather than dashing away on an exciting trip with my husband, I will rest here with him, my daughter and extended family. I will carve out time to sit and pray. I’ll take an extra moment present to my gratitude for the wonder-filled journey we’re amidst. I will be grateful for the strength and courage that has forged the path here. And I will live true to the values I hold most dear.
I’ll wake up tomorrow as I have most every since Lily’s birth – with those little hands on my face and big brown eyes beckoning the exciting start of a new day.
The clouds and rain
The wind that sweeps the sky clean and lets the sun shine again
This is the most magnificent life has ever been
Here is heaven and earth and the brilliant sky in between
All right, blessed is this life, I’m gonna celebrate being alive…
I let in the light
I sleep in the afternoon and become the noise in the night
I trespass in temptation and I suffered in sacrifice
But I awake each day with the new sunrise
Blessed is this life, I’m gonna celebrate being alive