Age Like Fine Wine; Here Is How I Celebrated My Birthday & Why You Should Take A Note
20 September! Yes, that’s my birthdate and until last year, I believed that ‘birthdays shouldn’t be celebrated’ because Oh God! You didn’t do anything significant just because you were born. Besides, these big birthday parties, inviting 50 people who you don’t care about just to show off is a trend that social media influencers and movies have passed to us.
Last year on 20 September 2021, I stayed at home, thanked everyone who wished me, and just spent the rest of my day as I usually do without any sort of special treatment. Neither I accepted the importance of a birthday nor I was interested in feeling special anyway.
Now, you must be thinking why so, right?
Well, even I don’t know the exact answer to why I denied acknowledging that birthdays are special. But if I look back in time and examine my thought process, I think the only reason is I WAS NOT MYSELF & I DIDN’T KNOW WHO I AM, WHAT I STAND FOR, WHAT MAKES ME, RENUKA.
And when you don’t know who you are, whose birthday will you celebrate? How can you be excited to celebrate your BIG day when you are not interested in knowing yourself?
That’s what I was until last year. I was not interested in knowing what I am, enjoy, or truly want from my life. I was just rushing to win this ‘rat race’ so I can prove to society that I am intelligent.
Some people are still like my old version, missing from their own life, hence they don’t take active participation in their own life. While some people are ignorant and are living to just impress and copy-paste society. These people are ready to do anything that makes them look COOL even if it costs their own peace. Whereas, some rare individuals create their own style of doing everything because that is what brings their unique touch to their lives and experiences.
And I am happy to announce that this year, I belong to the third category. How? Let’s see what changed this year, how I celebrated my birthday, and why you should take note of it.
What Changed This Year?
This year has been a pure blessing to me. I have never been this happy or rather satisfied with life as much as I am now. This year, I started taking Medium seriously. This year, I found out that I want to be an author. This year, I started my self-improvement journey. This year, I started decluttering toxic people and stuff from my life. This year, I started questioning my choices, my thoughts, my behavior, my words, and my preferences. This year, I started observing what makes me happy, sad, and angry. This year, I found out that my words have power and now it’s on me how to use that power.
And most importantly, this year, I realized that I am not just another human being roaming around the world. I am unique and I am not sent on earth to just ‘wake up-eat-work-follow what people say-sleep’
Human life is precious, a blessing, and is not given to everyone. You and I have this blessing so why not make the most out of it?
I believe that you are not a mistake or a coincidence. God has done his calculation and he has a higher purpose to send you on this earth. You and I are here to live up to that higher purpose. To live life so well that even the Universe thinks ‘Damn, this girl/boy is killing it’
This year, when I know my worth, who I am, what I stand for, why I am born, and what I deserve, I decided to celebrate this amazing human, Renuka.
Yes, I looked at myself as a separate identity as if I were looking at someone else. And I realized that I deserve to age like fine wine. I deserve to live, laugh, love, celebrate, and experience the world. So, I decided to celebrate my birthday in a different way. Here is how I did it:
1. Living In My Dream Place:
Believe it or not, your soul belongs to a place that exists somewhere far away from your hometown. I like to think of it as a ‘dream place’ of my soul. It’s like your soul craves to live in that one place that is beyond your reach at this moment. But at the same, the mere thought of going to that one city/country pushes you to work hard.
To tell you, my soul is kind of naughty. It belongs to many places like Edinburgh, Spain, Switzerland, and many other countries that I cannot even count on my fingertips. Though I cannot go to any of these places at this moment, I can still explore the dream cities of my country.
Hence, I decided to take my soul to one of the cities that I was dying to explore, Vrindavan. I always wanted to explore different parts of the world. Even as a child, I used to imagine myself living in different countries, and trying out new food but as I grew up, I met society’s expectations of me. And in the race of becoming like everyone, I completely lost who I was, what I wanted, and what used to make my heart beat faster.
The visit to Vrindavan made me realize how much I love stillness, peace and traveling. As soon as I entered the ISKCON temple, I felt as if my soul was getting younger.
I encourage you to take yourself to a place that is home to your soul. If you cannot travel to another country or city, explore a new café or maybe try a new dish or anything new that makes your heart younger.
2. Pampering Myself:
Can you remember when was the last time you made an extra offer to make yourself feel special?
Okay, I cannot.
Since childhood, we have been taught everything like how to earn money, how to read, how to laugh, how to sit, and how to work hard keeping everything else at stake but no one ever taught us how to TAKE CARE of ourselves.
Honestly, I never thought that there is something to take care of. I used to consider all this self-care and self-love as stupid marketing tactics. However, again this year things have changed. Earlier, my only goal was to work hard until I felt burnt out.
However, now I like to make efforts to pamper myself, to make myself feel loved, acknowledge my efforts, give myself things randomly, and act as if I deserve the world. I no longer want to feel sorry for myself.
On this birthday, I gifted myself an iPhone 13. I was thinking of buying it for the past 4 months but the ‘so-called conditional’ thinking always became a hurdle. I was repetitively thinking ‘should I really buy it, it’s so expensive?
And I think it’s our default system to condition our happiness. People make good money but when it comes to buying anything for themselves, they question their own needs. You need to realize that you deserve anything that you want and your wants don’t have to make sense to anyone. If you want something, get it without thinking if or not you deserve it (though don’t become materialistic)
3. Back to Old School:
The very first thing I did in the morning (after the usual chores) was to write two letters, one to my 10-year-old self and the second to my 30-year-old self.
To my younger self, I wrote how I am so proud of that little 10-year-old girl who has gone through so much without any support. I wrote about how she needs to believe in herself more than people’s judgments about her. And I said to my 10-year-old self that, bab, you have everything that you always wanted so don’t worry everything is going to be great.
To my future self, I basically wrote about what I want in the future, how I am going to get it and how my life is going to change in the next few years. I said to my 30-year-old self, boss, I am working on everything you want so keep dreaming big.
This simple exercise of writing letters to my younger and my future self-made me excited about how amazing future birthdays are going to be. In fact, I was even imagining reading this letter at 30 when all my dreams became my reality and feeling proud of myself for how I wrote my own destiny.
I encourage you to write a letter to your younger and future self too. It will make your heart beat faster as if someone has set you on fire. You will realize how much your future self deserves, and how hard your younger self has tried.
And just imagine reading your own letters down the line and feeling proud of yourself. That’s the kind of gift you would want to gift yourself. Make some promises to yourself this birthday and work on them so that your future is exactly like a fairytale. Make your every day about you. Work on your goals every day. Gain experience every day so that your brain grows, not just your age.
4. Gratitude Time:
Have you ever said thanks to your mother for no reason?
Our moms do so much for us. Right from nurturing us for 9 long months in her womb to making our favorite food instead of her own. It’s like a woman lives for herself but a mother lives only for her child. But alas! We never express gratitude towards our moms, the God on earth.
On this birthday, I thanked Mother for taking care of me every day, for going through labor while having me, for keeping me in her womb, for being my mother, and for teaching me some greatest lessons of life.
If you take only one thing from this blog, take this — EXPRESS THANKS TO YOUR MOTHER FOR GIVING YOU THIS BEAUTIFUL LIFE.
The whole purpose of writing this blog is to make you realize that you are important and you have a higher purpose on this earth. So, don’t treat yourself as if your existence doesn’t count for anything. The Universe wants you to live and experience life in a way that sets the bar high. Make mistakes, make love. Feel special for who you are and let others feel special when they are around you. Live life the way you want, not by the rules of society. Make your life the best story ever written. And most importantly don’t count your age by years, count your experiences, count the places you have traveled, count the hearts you have touched, and count the blessings of your life.
And at the end, AGE LIKE FINE WINE.
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