It's 1:54 am, Central Time, and I've just hung up the phone after talking with one of my best friends, my first birthday call of the day, marking the official change from one decade to another. It is a Happy Day, and I am one fortunate, blessed person.
People have been asking me what it feels like to turn 40, and I have to say, that in the best possible of ways, I feel that my age fits me--I am the most comfortable I've ever been in my own skin. I feel at peace with where I am in my life, with where I've been, and with moving forward in my life. I know that I am blessed to have my family and friends in my life, and I am filled with gratitude for where I have arrived in my life.
Earlier today (or, officially, yesterday), I surprised The Kid and took him out to lunch at a local kid's restaurant that serves its food in baskets traveling atop a children's train set. He has been wanting to visit this place for a while and, as the beginning of school looms right around the corner, today seemed like the perfect day to take a break and eat out. Lots of kids come to this particular restaurant to celebrate their birthdays, as the restaurant gives each birthday child a free, homemade cupcake topped with frosting, sprinkles, and a train whistle and a lit candle on top. You cannot top that.
Once we ordered our lunch, The Kid immediately decided on his dessert--a homemade cupcake, with homemade frosting, sprinkles and a train whistle. Yes, that was what he wanted. Then, suddenly, he realized it was the day before my birthday and he encouraged me to ask if adults could also get a cupcake for their birthday. And, after much pleading from The Kid, I finally asked our waitress. Soon enough, a pink frosted cupcake, topped with a pink candle, came gliding down the track inside a yellow basket riding on the train. To accompany my birthday treat, the restaurant played "Happy Birthday To You" on their stereo. The Kid thought it was funny, and so did I, though I was a tiny bit embarrassed, and so was he. But, we quickly got over it, as everyone knows homemade frosting helps you with that. So, we each ate our cupcake, and when he was through, The Kid took a quarter he'd been carrying around for a while over to the gumball machines. So, I sat thinking about how special this moment was; a spontaneous lunch with my 7 year old son, on the last day in my 30's. Suddenly, The Kid snuck up behind me, interrupting my thoughts, and handed me a tiny, plastic shell. "Here Mom," he said shyly, "I got this for you. Open it." I did, only to find an adorable, white, plastic star ring complete with a black smiley face painted on the front of the star and a black hair bow on top of the star's "head." When he saw how much I loved it, The Kid leaned in to give me a hug and said, "This is for you Mom. I love you so much. I was trying to decide if I was going to get myself something, or if I was going to get you something, and I decided to get you something for your birthday."
This plastic, star shaped ring is now my new, very most favorite piece of jewelry, ever.
Happy Birthday to Me, indeed.