another 365 days

Last week, I celebrated another year around the sun. It made me all sentimental and nostalgic--quiet (when I feel that way I get really reserved for some reason--probably because I'm all contemplative of the millions of reasons I have to be thankful). Truly, I just felt really grateful, really grateful! Mostly for the people in my life, but also for the experiences I've had and am having, and for how funny life is when you try to make plans. 

I have one of those stupidly trendy letterboards next to my fridge. Right now it says, "Home is where my mammals are." And that's true; I really feel that way. After being homeless and shacking up with my in-laws for nine months, and now having a home, I've learned that home really isn't a place. It's a feeling. It's people. Sometimes I watch my little one chase my labrador around while my husband is refereeing, and I just feel whole. I feel home. But it has nothing to do with the edifice we're in; it's people. (Except they're not all people so I say "mammals" because my dog is worth including. He truly is like my firstborn of flesh and blood. It's probably unhealthy how much I love him.) I feel grateful for this little clan that I get to call mine.

I felt humbled by the texts, calls, and messages from friends, family, and neighbors that came through all day, wishing me a happy birthday. It's touching to know that people remember you and are grateful you're born. (Sometimes it's silly to me that we make such a big deal out of birthdays--besides, what did IIII do to be celebrated? Nothing. Celebrate my dear mother for her excellent work pushing me down the canal April 26, 1989.) Although I feel it unnecessary to be celebrated, I also cherish it. I'm a Words of Affirmation typa-love-language-gal, so I LIVE for that crap. Most of the time I resent it, but birthdays are a built-in day each year where I just feel like exploding with love. I felt so loved, and surrounded by SO many kind, wonderful people. Just grateful.

And then there are the experiences of the last 365 days that you reflect on and feel immense gratitude for. I kind of lose track of how old I am, so my 28th year of life wasn't necessarily significant, but what happened in that year--and how I grew--makes my heart swell. The heights and bounds and depths of love I've felt as a new mother have blown me out of the water. My child is hyperactive and sometimes makes me want to scream, but it's funny how she can quickly turn around and make me melt. I've had to learn to surrender control as she's grown in age and opinion :), which has increased my patience. Relying entirely on someone else for the roof over our head was similarly humbling and caused me to feel insanely grateful to have married into such a rockstar family. 

My husband and I are at an impasse, and then next 365 days are entirely uncertain, but one thing is sure--I'm grateful. Grateful to be surrounded by such kind-hearted souls in this journey of life, grateful for the experiences I've had/am having/am yet to have, and grateful that life is a huge question keeps me humble. :)

Cheers to another year, and cheers to you for making my 28th year a wonderful one to be alive. 


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