I have to admit, I am one of those who loves to celebrate my own birthday. For so many years, I wanted others to make me feel celebrated and special, but then a few years ago I decided to take matters into my own hands and make MYSELF feel celebrated and special. Leaving that up to others was unkind of me…who wants that kind of pressure? Every year for the past, I don’t know…5 years?, I’ve been making my birthday into something that will leave me fulfilled and happy. One year, I got a massage for myself, another year I bought myself a Kindle, once it was a mani/pedi. Yesterday I decided to take the afternoon off work (I usually try to take the whole day off, but I had some things at work that needed to be done in the morning) and treat myself to a lovely afternoon with myself. 🙂

I took myself to lunch at a sweet little tea room that is decorated in various shades of pink – it is a very girly place and it was perfect for a quiet lunch. I don’t mind eating alone…I know some people have a problem with it, but for me, it’s kind of nice sometimes to just sit and watch the other diners or to just spend some time reading on my Kindle while I eat. After lunch, I took myself shopping and bought a few new Spring-y pieces to add to my wardrobe. Every place I went, I ended up getting some kind of discount, either because it was a promotion offered by the store or because the sales clerk wanted to add my birth month to their list for future coupons (when I told the girl that it was my birthday, she went ahead and gave me the coupon anyway), so I scored some great deals all for less than $100 total, which made the day even sweeter!

After buying two tops, a pair of pants, and two pair of super cute wedges, I went home to celebrate with my family. My husband cooked dinner for all of us (I love a man who cooks!) and the kids gave me their cards and presents and then we had cake and ice cream. Honestly, I felt so fulfilled already that I wasn’t even phased by the cake. I had one small piece with a small scoop of ice cream and after that, I didn’t want more. I was done with it and I didn’t go back for seconds.

At one point early in the evening, the kiddos had scattered to their rooms or to go play outside while dinner was cooking, and the hubs and I were talking about ordinary stuff when a special-to-us song came on (we were listening to a virtual mixtape I had made for him – you should try this, it’s so cool!!) and he pulled me in for a slow dance right there in the living room. I just remember feeling so happy – just pure happiness right at that moment, I almost wanted to cry. It was the sweetest gift I could have gotten.

At the end of the evening, I remember thinking “this is what having a full life feels like”…I don’t have a big fancy house, but I have a home with people I love; I don’t have loads of money in the bank, but I have enough to meet our needs plus a little bit extra; I don’t have tons of friends, but I have a few loyal pals that would kill or die for me (and I for them). And my family (immediate and extended)…gosh I don’t know how I would do this life without them.

The point of all this gushiness is that food was barely even on my radar yesterday. I had my special lunch and then I didn’t even think about food for the next 6 hours at all. Let me repeat that…I DIDN’T EVEN THINK ABOUT FOOD FOR THE NEXT 6 HOURS. AT ALL. Once I realized that, it dawned on me that “Oh! THIS is how I get to the other side of this food issue…I fill my days with things other than food that are just as satisfying!” Now, although I would love to go on a shopping spree every day of my life, my finances just won’t allow that, but I can totally do other things – I just have to remind myself to do them. I want to carry this feeling with me all the time, even in the midst of running kids around and folding laundry and cooking meals and cleaning house…if I could remember to carry this feeling with me all day every day, I’d solve my food issues for good.