Turning 40 for a lot of us ladies is a big deal. It was very much a big deal for me as well but not for the typical reasons. Most dread the number and the upper digits at this point in life but I’ve never been one of those “I hate getting older” gals.
I’ve known some pretty amazing “older” woman and I’ve longed for their wisdom and perceptive on life, kids, marriage, etc. I’m totally not there yet but I’m feeling less lost in the process.
My husband, kids, nieces, and sister (just off the plan the night before) all worked the entire day yesterday to throw me a wonderful birthday dinner. The kids used their own money to buy dozens of balloons, a sign, and gifts, and decorated the dining room.
It was beautiful for me to see how my kids and friends see me. It was overwhelming to see myself in them as they worked so hard to make me feel loved. Even in their gifts I saw their thoughtfulness for who I am and what I value in life.
Vincent made me a book of Saints and their lives. Of course, he had two of my favorites in this book, Joachim and Anna, the Theotokos mother and father. I love to teach the kids about the lives of the martyr’s and Saints and they are so fascinated by their lives.
Paloma’s gift hadn’t arrived yet but she also knows me so well. She ordered me a new icon and a Pro-life t-shirt. I can’t wait to see them both!
Michelle and Jillian also see that side of me that works till I’m exhausted. Caring for my family and working a full-time job is not easy. They blessed me with a gift certificate to a massage therapy place and I can’t wait to use it. Of course no celebration in our house is complete without our friends the Campbells. Little miss Julie made me a card and Jessica gifted me the Alex and Ani bangle “Friend”. My mom also knows me well and sent her gift of clothes with Michelle. Thanks Mom!
I only cried once while opening my gifts. Aly’s card to me read, “I’m lucky to be apart of your family. I don’t know what I would have done without you” and then she ended the card “Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. Help us, save us, have mercy on us, and keep us O god by thy grace.” These lines are from a prayer we pray regularly in our home and at church. Why did this bring me to tears? Because I can see Gods hand of grace and mercy all over her life and what a precious gift for me to be able to see Him unfold in her. I am in awe of His healing.
All throughout the night I felt enveloped in love. From the preparations, to the gifts, to all the planning my husband went into to make this night special for me. I’m humbled to turn forty and be so loved by this group of amazing little and big people. This is truly what life is about. I have “it” all.
Thank you John, Paloma, Vincent, Aly, Michelle, Jillian, Jonathan, Jessica, Julie and Mom for all your love!