Well, I am officially 40.
I celebrated my birthday last Monday at home quarantined with my family while the rest of you were also at home quarantined with your family. As one does as they are approaching a milestone birthday, I had been mentally preparing for my 40th birthday for months. My sweet husband had planned a big trip to Palmetto Bluff, South Carolina with a group of our dearest friends. On my actual birthday I was planning to host a ladies open house brunch while all of our kids were at school. I fully intended to turn my birthday “day” into a birthday “week” and enjoy having a reason to catch up with friends and family.
But I can definitely say that absolutely NOTHING could have prepared me for what that day would end up looking like. While I tried to remain cheerful all day, it was also the first weekday of quarantining with the family. I was still mostly in shock about the fact that school was cancelled indefinitely, our trip to Palmetto Bluff was cancelled and that our very own America was facing such a scary and unknown future. I was spinning around, stress eating and constantly reading all of the group texts pouring in from my confused “home school” mom friends.
To say it lightly, I imagined that my 40th birthday week recap would look quite different than this post.
But the beautiful thing about being older and wiser is that I know none of it matters.
Only health, happiness and faith that everything is going to be OK.
Today I thought I would share four little moments that brightened my birthday. I share this to help give you ideas of how to maybe celebrate your own birthday or how to help brighten a friend’s birthday during this isolated and socially distant period in our lives.
ONE || YARD DECORATIONS
Sweet girlfriends surprised me with festive yard and porch decorations. It was such a bright spot in my day and the perfect gift to keep on giving as it helped it feel more like a birthday week! I kept it up for several days after my birthday and it provided so many birthday wishes from passing neighbors. There has been lots of time on the front porch waving to neighbors walking by and it was delightful to have them holler “Happy Birthday” as they strolled.
SOURCE: RAINBOW YARD SIGN
TWO || DRIVE BY BIRTHDAY WISHES
I laughed when I asked my husband to snap this shot, because it all just felt so surreal. But this sums up what life is all about! Making the most of curve balls. Friends coming by in their cars to wish me a happy birthday face to face even when we all felt so anxious. (Although they were probably happy to have an excuse to leave the house!)
THREE || A STAND-IN BIRTHDAY CAKE
While on my final grocery run last weekend, it never crossed my mind to buy myself a birthday cake. Because, well, I have never bought myself a birthday cake before! I thought about making one, but honestly I was so busy trying to be a Day 1 Home School Mom and honestly didn’t have any motivation for something that intensive. So for my birthday, we improvised. I had declared “breakfast for dinner” that night… and our dessert was … Cinnamon Rolls. We even put a candle on it and I got to make my birthday wish. (Any guesses what that wish might have been?) This was such a fun and special treat for the boys and no one blinked an eye that there was no actual birthday cake.
I forgot to snap a picture, but I did find this hilarious picture of a cake that would have actually been quite relevant. 🙂
FOUR || BESTIE VIDEO CONFERENCE CALL
While everyone was struggling to find their footing on Monday, I decided to take charge of my own birthday and schedule a video conference call! My besties and I have had a text chain going on since the beginning of time, so we were already busy texting (aka riding an emotional roller coaster) that day. So I scheduled a conference call for us to connect and required everyone to pour themselves a “Quarantini” and they all said a cheers to my birthday. Of course, no one actually whipped up a Martini on a Monday night, but it was fun, felt festive, and just what my soul needed!
Turning 40 does make you rethink things. And one thing I know for sure is how much more grateful for the little things I want to be when this is all over. But I don’t think turning 40 will have much to do with that, as I believe we will all see things a little different on the other side of this.