December and Birthdays

That first birthday, the day you are born is sometimes called the “littlest birthday” and often the biggest celebration. Some birthdays have become more special than others ( if that’s at all possible). Some I’ve heard of: One-year-old, the first double digit birthday, the first teen year, Sweet 16, quinceanera, 21st,  legal age, 50th – a half century, 100th-a century, a golden birthday- when your age matches the date of your birth. My golden birthday was March 15, 1962 when I turned 15.

Birthdays can also mark new beginnings to celebrate a special part of a life, or an event in a life. Many people celebrate an accomplishment as a birthday- publishing a book, a marriage, a new citizenship, a new “lease” on life. My Eastside Writing Room group celebrated our 9th birthday in 2022.  My first book, Thinking of Miller Place celebrated its 15th birthday on November 17, 2022. My Seedlings book celebrated its 8th birthday on January 6, 2022. December 28, 2022 was a 37th birthday for me. A private, but WOW birthday.

Around our house, it goes without saying, birthdays are special. You are the only one of you in the entire world. My twinship holds a myriad of similarities. My twin and I often sound alike, have the same gestures, and sometimes still buy the same clothes (not planned). But we are each unique. I am the only one exactly like me in the whole world. As is she. As are you. So on our birthday, your birthday, anyone’s birthday I write or repeat this quote:

May you have a wonderful celebration of your birthday! “Celebrating a birthday is exalting life and being glad for it. On a birthday, we do not say: ‘Thanks for what you did, or said, or accomplished.’ No, we say: ‘Thank you for being born and being among us.’ Celebrating a birthday reminds us of the goodness of life.”  Henri Nouwen  

You choose how, where, how big, how loud, how simple or fancy, But do celebrate!!!

Ethel Lee-Miller blogs regularly about people, the power of words, and her writing life. She’s retired from professional writing gigs after 30 years of teaching, coaching, editing, and gathering writers to publicly share their work. She is the author of Thinking of Miller Place, and Seedlings, Stories of Relationships. These days, she writes to inspire, to connect with folks, and for the pure enjoyment of it. Ethel enjoys sharing stories at Odyssey Storytelling, Artists Standing Strong Together, and anywhere there’s a mic or a Zoom room.