The Birthday Epidemic

Tomorrow is my birthday.

And when one’s birthday approaches everyone asks you what your plans are, “Anything exciting??” And I have learned that my response to these questions is generally tsk’d by those that hear it, I don’t like my birthday. I just don’t care for it. Which is ironic, because I try to make other people feel special on their birthday but on my own I try to hide away somewhere.

I very nearly refrained from admitting I dislike my birthday because if I’m being honest it’s probably a “single thing” the fact that I’m not with someone that cares about my birthday. But no matter, that will be remedied one day and maybe I’ll like my birthday again.

But in the meantime I will be grateful. Grateful for another year. As I am turning 22, I shall list 22 things I am grateful for, just because I love lists:

1) My parents. They kind of brought me into this world, for starters. But they’re also two of the most fun and most welcoming and loving people ever. Spending a chunk of this year with them was a glorious detour.

2) That I am NOT going to be at FedEx from midnight to midnight of my birthday this year. My 21st was definitely unique, guys.

3) For my tiny tiny church of the moment, announcements at my church are more heartfelt than some churches’ sermons. No seriously.

4) For friends in my life that know just what to say (or not to say) when I need it.

5) For the examples around me of good marriages and good families, some single people look at good marriages and families and get depressed that they don’t have those already, but I find them insanely encouraging.

6) That this year of my life I gain a new sister. (LIKE TWO AND A HALF MONTHS FROM NOW… I set them up.)

7) That I didn’t start dating a guy that wanted to put me in a housewife box. ;)

8) European friends. This past year I gained a bunch of European friends and they dubbed me as “More European than American.” The highest compliment they could give, I was honored. :) I look forward to visiting these friends.

9) That God still could have only good things to speak over me even when I feel like I suck and I just bombed everything.

10) That I have managed to have a roof over my head every night while living this nomad life, that is indeed something to be grateful for.

11) For Little Cauch and giving up a piece of nomad life.

12) That haven’t settled as so many do.

13) For the myriad of lifelong lessons I learned within the last year of my life, lessons it takes some years to learn.

14) For the Breaking Bad finale, it was perfect.

15) For my young adults small group that deserves a separate shout out from my church shout out. This group is exactly what I have needed for a long time and everyone in it is a vital part.

16) For the fact that broken hearts heal, that devastation ends, that trauma can be overcome. These things are no one’s end, certainly not mine.

17) To be in Michigan this fall watching the leaves change.

18) For the incredible options before me in life and the favor that follows me, even when I don’t feel it I know I am blessed and favored.

19) For my brothers, two of my favorite people, two of my biggest heros.

20)  For the dreams in my heart. They are the God-given nudge that keeps me moving forward through the darkest seasons toward glorious light.

21) To be returning to the homeland of my heart, California, in the new year.

22) That next year I will have even more things to be grateful for.

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