Love And Learnings From My 23rd Birthday

To me, every birthday is a big birthday. You are celebrating your solar return, another year on this planet, being alive to experience more of what the world has to offer. That is pretty special if you ask me. Every moment is for celebrating the infinite beauty that life presents. ESPECIALLY your birthday. And it’s not just my birthday I love. Its EVERYONE’S birthday. I love celebrating life. This year, before I knew whether anybody had planned anything on my behalf (I don’t expect this at all, but my family are generally incredible at helping me celebrate my birthday), I thought I wouldn’t wait for someone else to celebrate for me, so I planned some bits myself. I am in a lifelong committed relationship to myself, so why wouldn’t I want to plan something special?! I decided to book 3 days off work to celebrate. Three days to do exactly as I choose, to start my 24th year off on the right foot and surround myself with those that I love. Start as we mean to go on I say. I have vowed going forwards that this will be the minimum that I give myself every year.

I totally get that some people don’t like celebrating their birthday with hoards of people and simply don’t like the attention that a birthday can bring. It isn’t for everyone. But even if you don’t like a big affair, doing something to acknowledge the day your wonderous being came onto Earth can be a really lovely way to show yourself some love and that you’re grateful for another year. The day you were born was a miracle. Period. Whether it’s a bubble bath and a cup of tea or a dinner with friends, find a way that works for you to give a nod to your birthday. Or not. For some birthday’s are difficult, and it’s totally fine to not want to celebrate. Do what feels good to you.

For those that do enjoy marking their birthday, I thought I would let you know what I planned to maybe give you some ideas for how you can honour yourself over your next birthday. I also learnt a pretty valuable lesson from this years birthday plans, which I will share at the end. Always learning, even when celebrating. That’s why I love life.

The day before my birthday I awoke early. I went to our local health food shop ‘The Natural Way’ in Braintree to pick up a veg box and some other bits and bobs. I had invited friends round on my actual birthday in the evening to celebrate with vegetarian/vegan platters and a firepit. What an excellent chance for me to practice some recipes. After my shopping trip, I got back home and started prepping. I love cooking. I find it a really beautiful process. Especially when I know I will be sharing the food with people I love. That afternoon, amongst a meal out with my beautiful Aunt and Uncle and a pedicure from my Cousin (find her on Instagram and Facebook as Serenity Treat Beauty, she also does the most AMAZING hand made products), I had my first birthday present to myself – a tarot reading with Shae at Shae’s Sanctuary. For me, this was a beautiful way to round off the year just gone and understand my path for the year ahead a little better. It really did give me clarity and a gentle nudge to say that I am on the right track (plus Shae is a wonder, so anyone in Essex that is looking for tarot readings definitely check her out).

On my actual birthday, I facetimed and called family and went for a beautiful lunch with my Dad, his partner and my Brother. We walked in nature along the river Orwell, which is one of my favourite things to do with people that I love. And then in the evening, I created vegan/vegetarian platters using whole and natural ingredients to share with a group of friends whom I love dearly. We sat outside, chatted about life and listened to music. It was wonderful.

On my birthday Boxing Day I went out for brunch with my gorgeous friend Kiera who couldn’t attend on the Thursday, and then I went for a massage ( I didn’t realise how much this massage was needed until I got there. I’m pretty sure I fell asleep). In the evening I knew I needed to slow down. So I took some time to properly take in the messages that had been sent, had a bubble bath with candles and some chocolate from Anisa & Chocolate, kindly gifted by my beautiful friend Lis (check out her blog exploring Cambridge, it’s magic if you are local to the area!) and tried my best to do as little as possible.

I’m so pleased I planned out time for myself for my birthday. I definitely want to do a similar thing every year now. I am still overwhelmed with gratitude from every experience and person that helped me celebrate. But now for the lesson I learned – It’s pretty important to leave breathing room in between everything you do. Not just in celebrating your birthday, but in life too. By the end of the three days, I was knocked for six. I had also had something happen at the beginning of the week that took a toll on my energy as well, but the up and down of the week, all the excitement of my birthday and going from one thing to another really took it out of me. I am so grateful for everything I did and all of the people I saw, but next time I may bare in mind how much time I need to collect myself and bring my energy back into my being before each activity. This applies to life too. How often do we take a few minutes in the car before going into the house when coming home from work to get ourselves in the right frame of mind for our family environment? Or grounding and centring ourselves after listening to a friend and supporting them in a difficult situation. All of these things take up our energy in one way or another, even if it’s something that you have lovingly chosen to do. Giving breathing room to decompress, assimilate and acknowledge, I discovered, is vitally important. I will bare this in mind for my future, birthdays and all.

This post is in no way about me trying to boast about my birthday. The pure intention is to empower people to plan beautiful things for themselves. Because you are worth it. We are all worth it. It’s always worth scheduling in a little time to play, as well as seeing what surprises life has in store for you and going with the flow. In fact, why wait for a birthday? Celebrate every day.

With Love, Light & Best Wishes,

Ciara X

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