I love this time of year. I mean really LOVE.
The love runs deep for many reasons — the weather and overall happy energy makes me feel good. The waters have warmed enough for us locals to actually swim, fishing is all great on both sides of the island, the busy tourist and art show season has come to a close so there is more time in a day and most of all, because May is my birthday month. YIPPEE!
For those of you that don’t know me – I LOVE MY BIRTHDAY.
Some of the love is nostalgia. You see I am from Buffalo, NY and honestly, it was just a happy time of year. My birthday falls at the end of May and this time signifies the beginning of summer for many of us outside the south of the country. People are filling backyard pools, putting up awnings over porches and opening up the family cottages at the lake. Summer is coming! What else could one want?
Now back to the topic of birthdays.
Maybe one of the only downsides of marrying a charter captain is my hubby can be quite busy work-wise around my birthday. It typically falls close to Memorial Day weekend and the islands are packed. I have learned to ‘cope’ (giggle). I get special treatment when that happens and we make sure to celebrate for a few days (I mean weeks). I definitely make the most of it.
For me, birthday time is an excuse to be spoiled and just take a break – that’s what I try to do!
I have noticed over the years, I have gotten into a ritual that is really special—I call it “Karen’s Backcountry Paddle Birthday Party”. My hubby and I grab a few close friends and paddleboards—as many as we can fit in the boat—and we head off for a morning of birthday fun. Clint will drop us off mid-way to our favorite sandbar. We paddle as far as we can, but that can be very weather dependent. Hopefully, we make it all the way to the sandbar, but we know he’ll happily pick us up and chauffeur us to our destination if the need arises. (If you want to know more, call Capt. Clint). We spend the morning relaxing with each other, swimming, eating tasty treats and sipping birthday mimosas.
I am so grateful each and every day that I am here and able to embrace this life and my little slice of paradise.
Perhaps you are on the other side of the birthday excitement scale and you don’t celebrate your birthday with quite the excitement I do—that’s ok. I can respect that. But, either way, I think birthdays are a great time for reflection and gratitude. It is a perfect moment for stepping forward with a new perspective. We get this new badge—yes, it’s a number, but it is an honor too.
This year, I get the badge of 43! What? I wasn’t going to share that, but, truthfully, I am proud and happy for all that I am, right here and now.
Someone out there said, ‘grow old gracefully’. Well friends, I am going for grace, but the truth is, I am fighting aging every step of the way. I believe age is just a number and that really means a lot as the number keeps creeping up. I live with a strong intention to be healthy, spread love and positivity. Most importantly, I remind myself that I control my life. So, that is powerful. We get to choose our energy every day.
So, for the moment, I will embrace my new badge number. I will keep dying those sparkly greys a beautiful rich chocolate brown. I will do my yoga and drink green smoothies. And, I will still eat that weekly bag of potato chips (its all about balance, right?).
photo taken by Capt. Clint Moore in the backcountry off The Lower Florida Keys. www.captainclintmoore.com