Yesterday was a special day… my birthday!
My twenty-eighth birthday to be exact.
Birthdays have always been fun to me. They are another day to celebrate and look back on the past year and set goals for the year ahead. I have a blurred memory of lots of my birthdays growing up… the first one I remember was when I was 4. I remember getting this big brown teddy bear that I actually may still have in the basement… There was one that was a surprise party on Easter Sunday, that may have been my 7th I think. I had my easter dress, bonnet, and gloves on and heard the loud SURPRISE as I walked in the door and promptly collapsed to the floor. My sweet 16 was another little surprise party with my youth group friends. On my 18th birthday my parents surprised me by pulling a “Pimp my Ride” style stunt and completely redoing my 96 Pontiac Sunfire turning into what was lovingly dubbed the Smiley-Mobile. Think bright yellow, flashy lights, and a windsheild decal that said Smiley (which was my nickname back then)
Excuse the quality of these pictures… I’m pretty sure they were taken with a disposable camera. And I had to dig them out of an old photo album, like a physical photo album… not one on a hard drive somewhere.
Anyway, that was my pride and joy for awhile. Until she died. RIP Smiley. As I was thinking about all my past birthdays and this one came up I realized that was TEN years ago. Gosh, at 18 I seemed so… young. And yes, I was wearing a tiara made out of silver pipe cleaners…. Oh life. It seemed so simple back then. I remember vividly imagining where I would be in 10 years. Man, was I wrong. And I’m so thankful too. Garth was right when he said Some of God’s Greatest gifts were unanswered prayers.
As I look back on the past 28 years there are so many life lessons and defining moments. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned, especially in the last 10 years, is to not to live life solely based on expectations. Not just your own expectations, but that of those around you and society. I am no where I expected to be when I pictured 28. I’m actually in a much better place than I could have ever imagined.
I have a handsome husband and a beautiful daughter.
I am in the best shape of my life.
I have the most amazing CrossFit family. I have a wonderfully supportive online community (you guys are awesome!) and I get a new chance to inspire people every single day.
I truly am blessed. Yesterday everyone made me feel so special. I can’t thank you all enough for that.
Here is to another year full of loving fiercely, laughing loudly, and living large.
What’s one of your most memorable birthdays?