As a child, I got excited around this time of the year. Presents, celebration and cake! It seemed like July 19th would never come around. As I grew older, I still got excited, especially when I reached 21 and was able to legally go out and have a drink. I think after the 21st birthday, milestones didn’t matter much to me anymore so birthday celebrations where not a big deal as they once were. The only big one was my 30th birthday where I could say good-bye to the irresponsible 20s. So, I did a celebration for my “dirty thirty” as they call it and did another one for 35, since that’s a marker in my mind that things start to go downhill from there and also that you are much more accomplished in life in this phase.

Well I was correct things went downhill from there health wise and accomplishments in life went up. Health wise, I couldn’t run like I used to and suffered from bad sprains as a result. My food tolerance shifted. The slow aches and pains etc. You know, the stuff we all start going through. I never looked at it as a negative. Just that life was changing, and I was rolling with it. 

I’m going to keep this blog super short, because really the focus is being happy that today I am alive to celebrate my birthday. I could have been robbed of this milestone, but it wasn’t. For that, I am forever grateful to my neurosurgeon saving my life so I can celebrate many more. I will no longer look at birthdays with a sigh that I’m getting older but look at them that I’m lucky. I don’t need a massive celebration, I just need to look in the mirror and smile and that’s a gift enough for me. 

I’m glad that today, people can wish me happy birthday rather than memorialize it. Sounds kind of dark, but it’s the truth.

My message to anyone with a struggle is celebrate each day, not just your birthday. We can be robbed at any moment, but when you wake up in the morning, you weren’t. 

When I hit my Stroke anniversary, I do plan on celebrating big. It’s my second birthday and one that means a lot more to me in this age than my normal birthday. It’s the day that several people and my body put up the biggest fight to save me, and I am eternally thankful for that. 

Lastly, my best present is all the support I have received these past 7 months from my husband, family, friends, and stroke family.

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