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How in hell did I get to be 45?? Before I go into panic mode, let me breathe and remember…what’s that saying about getting older…enjoy it because it’s a privilege denied to many.  Ah, now that feels better.

I really do feel younger and sillier than I did in my 20s and 30s.  I was trying to stake a claim at some sort of career path and figure so much out.  Sure I had fun, but I was pretty serious at the core. 

And the two paths of my life, personal and professional, really started ‘forking’ and developing (or not) in very different ways.  I wouldn’t call myself a whiz or expert in my jobs, but I do good work and I’m proud of it.  I’m proud that I can provide for myself and support myself in a fairly decent lifestyle.  The personal side of me, well, that’s been a slippery path.  I struggled with depression starting in my late 20s and early 30s.  My friends, cousins and my brother were all getting married and having children…really turning into ‘adults’ I guess.  And me?  Nope.  Why wasn’t it happening for me?  Sure, there were dates and a few boyfriends but none of those relationships went anywhere.   Was there something wrong with me?  Did I miss something important about adult life or successful romantic relationships that everyone magically learned and I spaced?   Ugh, I hate feeling like some weirdo leftover freakazoid.   What was it??

Well, a few rounds of counseling and the school that is Life have helped immensely.  I never wanted to try going on antidepressants or anything.  Something about the fact they chemically alter the brain kind of freaks me out.  Maybe that’s not entirely a true statement.  I know many people who have taken them and it’s been extremely beneficial for them.  

I just keep trying to be open and self-aware and continue to grow and improve wherever I can at being the best I can be.  Sure there have been years that were clunkers, growing/rebuilding years and, looking back, a few that were downright shitty.  I’m a firm believer that everything happens exactly as it’s suppose to happen, even if the reason for it is not entirely clear in the moment.  And I never, ever give up.  I know that positivity is one of my strengths.  Yes, I do want to get married eventually. 

So, yesterday was my birthday (and the reason for the name of this blog too).  Given this was a mini-milestone birthday of sorts, I decided I deserved a little extra pampering. 

I got a massage on Thursday.  Hoo doggy, this was such an amazing experience that I am probably going to shuffle around some of my budget so I can get one monthly.  Kind of sad it’s been 5 years since I’ve had one!  And it shows alright!! J had her work cut out for her, as my upper shoulders and back are cement-like and full of knots.  I joked with her ahead of time about this and we had a good laugh.  She also suggested I play around with how I have my work and home laptops positioned.  My arms are pretty short compared to my torso and rest of my body, and she says I likely have the keyboards too far away, so the constant reaching causes stress and strain in my arms, shoulders and pecs.  Ah, makes sense!  Kind of sad how “just” working away at a desk on a computer can cause injuries over time!  Oh, and how did I connect up with J?  She is a client of L’s; he built her website in the link above.  Nice!

So on my actual birthday I had a wonderful lunch with my folks at Milagro in downtown Kirkland.  Such a prime spot right on Lake Street!  And the weather was beautiful, so everyone was out with kids, dogs, biking, roller blading…just glorious.  And crowded too; I joke that when the weather gets nice you simply cannot be in a hurry if you are driving through that part of town. 

This was the first time at Milagro for all 3 of us.  And what do they say about first impressions…the ambiance is very nice and we were seated at a very generous sized booth.  Only when the server brought the menus did we notice a large area of the table had not been wiped clean.  Oops.  Later when our iced teas came my Mom’s glass was dirty.  Ew.  Thankfully they were very apologetic and fixed the problems quickly, but after that I was closely inspecting every piece of silverware and the dishes as we were served the whole rest of the lunch! Too funny.  The food was very good – we had a trio of salsas and chips for appetizers, and I had a wonderful chopped salad with carrots, corn, black beans, avocado and radishes…and a few other things that escape me right now.   Mom had a shrimp salad with apples and jicama and Dad chose the Enchiladas.  Delicious!

So I figured I need to stop denying myself indulgent things (within reason so I don’t break my budget) and just spend time getting more pampering.  Reserving time in my life to relax and recharge without guilt.  The massage was a huge, glaring reminder in neon letters that this is SO important to my well-being and feeling totally connected with my body.

Later in the afternoon I spent a little time shopping at Sur La Table – gosh we are so blessed to have this store in Kirkland!  I picked up some new kitchen hand soap and lotion (limoncello scented, yes!) and some tongs and a flexible trivet both in happy apple green.

And I topped off my pampering with a much-needed, overdue pedicure.  This was a total last-minute decision – I was so happy they had an opening!!  Now I can wear my open-toes shoes and sandals without cringing, well, for the next couple weeks or so.  Love it.

Summer hockey season starts tonight! I can’t WAIT to get back on the ice.  THIS is the best way to fight off good ol’ middle age…skate your ass off with a bunch of late 20-something (mostly) teammates.  Who I love like brothers.