happy, happy birthday, baby.

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i turned 34 this week. the estrogen-compelled ageist in me bemoaned the fact, condemning the gray hairs abounding along my middle part (of course. of course they sprout up in the exact place they would be most noticeable), and my metabolism, aka the physiological version of a last-picked-in-P.E. loser, no longer able to sprint through any of my all-you-can-eat culinary acquisitions the way it used to. but, the Moonriver cantillating, stained-glass reverie dwelling, heartsome part of me reveled in the blessing of another year on a planet so apt to provide. aside from grateful communion with my God, i felt there was no better way to express my thankful wonder at the world then by composing a list of 34 reasons why I am so very glad to be alive and well.

  1. a body that knows its rhythms, even when it is thrown off-key. it knows its purpose and it honors that
  2. my faith. it is not always uncomplicated, but it is abiding
  3. good weather (sometimes “good weather” means rain, too)
  4. the sanctuary that is the beach
  5. the ocean and its many lessons: that the tide always faithfully returns to the shore (faith provides), the expansiveness therein, both in breadth and depth (our eternal potential to expand and ascend), the abundance beneath its surface, the mysteries both uncovered and undiscovered (our evolving identities, the nascent lives within us waiting to be found)
  6. sea glass!
  7. a mom who always comes to my rescue
  8. the smell of the eucalyptus trees on the walk from our apartment to the beach
  9. the truly bewildering acknowledgement that I have the love of a really good man
  10. that that truly good man encourages me to spread my wings in whatever direction the wind is blowing them that day (haha)
  11. Dr. Bronner’s almond soap
  12. strength of body and of spirit
  13. Zac Efron
  14. podcasts
  15. BODIE
  16. anything depicting, explaining, illustrating, exposing or even briefly mentioning medieval British monarchies
  17. my shower– i love love love my shower
  18. a dad who would do anything for his children
  19. letters from my far-away sister
  20. FaceTime conversations with my other not-so-far-away sister
  21. phone calls from my brothers
  22. laughing with my siblings
  23. Hot and Spicy Cheez-Its (“I’m Monica– i’m disgusting.”)
  24. my Bompa
  25. grapefruit
  26. the sensorium of experiences around the world- I know this is a rare privilege and I’m so grateful for it
  27. sacred moments where Heaven extends its reach
  28. living four minutes away from some of the best tacos I’ve ever had
  29. an aunt who is more like a big sister
  30. Stevie Nicks and her musical encantations
  31. the word “beloved”
  32. a burgeoning desire to understand and defend the quiet nobility of womanhood
  33. three-year-olds (“I need a username. ‘Little Kid Lover‘. That way people will know exactly where my priorities are at.”)
  34. the Patty Griffin station on Pandora (thanks for the tip, Mama!)

peace and love.

 

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