Today I am FORTY.
It’s big enough that I decided I should write it in all caps and buy myself a little coconut cake to celebrate.
Forty seems to be a big enough deal of a birthday that people do crazy things like go waste a bunch of money in Vegas or buy an insanely fast car or get a ridiculous tattoo. I am doing none of those things. But I did decide that this birthday needed some sort of big gesture. Instead of a big party (awkward for me) or an exotic vacation (just did that) I decided the big gesture should not be FOR me but instead should be FROM me.
So, I have spent the past month writing forty letters to forty people who have had a strong influence in my life. Choosing to do this has been the greatest blessing to me in approaching this birthday.
Imagine, if you can, thinking about the people who’ve made a difference in your life. Then think about the effort of taking the time to write each and every one of them, mentioning in detail things they have done that have left a mark on your heart, have truly changed who you are as a person. It is no small task and I just finished the last three letters last night.
When you do this, you become aware of so many wonderful blessings that have been showered upon you throughout your days. You are filled with gratitude for the people you’ve known, the experiences you’ve shared together, the very wonderful gifts they are in your life. You come to your birthday realizing that you want or need for nothing because all that you could possibly every desire has already been given to you by the people God has placed in your path. Love, confidence, humility, humor, charity, hope, empathy, joy – these are the gifts I am talking about. Priceless, precious gifts.
Today, I am forty. And I am at peace with it. If I have forty more years with the people who’ve already blessed my life, plus get to meet more people and receive more of their goodness, I will have lived a wonderful life indeed.
Happy Birthday to me! Forty is the new AWESOME.