Birthdays are an opportunity to count blessings and life lessons. Here are a few I’ve learned.
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Today (Dec 6th) is my 42nd birthday, and I honestly can’t believe I’ve made it his far in life.
These last few days I’ve been thinking about how much I’ve changed in the last few years, and about the things I’ve learned. It may not be much, but it’s something.
Looking back at old pictures and social media posts, I realize I’m a very different person today than I used to be. Not better or worse, just different.
My Birthday Life Lessons
This was me seven years ago.
Back then, I was teaching freelance English courses. I enjoyed teaching, even though sometimes it was stressful. Teaching was something I sort of fell into and found I could do well, so it became my job.
I had started my health and fitness journey a few months back, and I had already lost some weight. I felt good about it, but I didn’t love my body too much.
I had an overly positive outlook on life. I didn’t think anything bad could ever happen to me.
I preferred to wear bright colors. No black.
I loved wearing makeup and doing my hair, and I swore I would never dye it.
I had two kids and I certainly wasn’t thinking about having a third.
I felt happy and confident about everything. Confident that everything would work out great.
This is me now.
I don’t teach English anymore. Instead, I have two blogs because I enjoy writing. In fact, writing had been my life-long dream but I had never done any writing until now. Writing is what I truly enjoy doing.
I’m still on my health and fitness journey. I’m a lot stronger and fitter than I used to be, which makes me proud.
After I had my little girl, I managed to lose 50 pounds on my own, and my weight loss journey changed the way I feel about my body. I stopped hating it.
Turns out, I did have a third child. I have a daughter now and it’s been a beautiful experience. I never thought I would have a little girl, but she’s here and she has completely changed motherhood for me.
My daughter has made me question everything. I no longer have the same opinion on motherhood, gender relations, work, career, good and bad.
I have also strived to embrace body positivity because I want to set an example for my daughter. I don’t want her to grow up feeling ugly and inadequate.
I’m now a work-at-home mom. I write my blogs and do the marketing and promotion for our family business.
To be honest, I never thought about staying at home with my kids until I had my little girl. I realized I wanted to try a different approach with my last baby. Instead of her growing up in day care, like my sons did, I decided to spend quality time with her. And enjoy my two sons before they grow too old.
I decided to enjoy motherhood more because it’s not something I’ll ever get back.
I’ve also gone through some hard times which dampened my view on life a bit.
Last year, my sister lost the battle to leukemia and this devastated me. I lost my faith in God and I couldn’t even pray. I’m slowly getting my faith back and I’m no longer so sad, but my outlook on life has definitely changed.
I’ve changed on the surface. I dyed my hair and I wear more black, but the change has mostly been from inside.
I’m now very aware of my own mortality, which is something I had never really thought about before. It’s funny, but somehow you think you’re going to be around forever until you realize you won’t.
Now I don’t think of my birthday as one more year, but as one year less. I have one year less to live, so I have to do something good with the time I have left.
That’s why I appreciate things more. I enjoy today more. I enjoy the time I have with my kids and I don’t miss the work hours that used to take me away from them .
I try to spend more time with my husband, my parents, my other sister, my loved ones. That’s the only time worth spending.
I want to keep writing. Perhaps I’ll be able to make a living out of it. Why not? I have nothing to lose.
You could say I appreciate things more.
Happy birthday to me!
I have learned quite a few life lessons in barely few years, though it feels like a lifetime. Everything seems so different now.
For example, my dad is now sick. He has diabetes and his kidneys are failing. He’ll need dialysis, or a transplant. It’s a situation we’ll have to live through as a family, so we’ll all need to be strong.
My mom is also growing older, so my parents will need both my sister and me.
And my oldest son is all grown up. He’ll soon move out and live out his own life. It’s so strange not to see him as a child anymore.
Life changes. The challenges come along, we face them and learn a few lessons along the way.
I no longer possess a blind optimism, but I do think I’m wiser. I know there are challenges up ahead but I’m sure I’ll get through.
I’m just grateful to still be here and be able to learn some more life lessons. Happy birthday to me!
How about you? What’s your most meaningful life lesson?