Nick will be 40 years old in less than a month. It seems a little hard to believe that we are all that much older.
When we asked him what he wanted to do to celebrate his 40th birthday, he said he wanted a party in Ireland and in Carnation. He wanted two parties. Arden and I decided that since we could make that happen, why not start the party now? I think that it is a great idea.
Why do we often limit our acknowledgement of those we love to one or two days a year? Birthdays and anniversaries are special days to honor others, of course. I have, however, noticed that while we are on this birthday trip to Ireland and simultaneously planning the party back at Carnation next month, I am more aware of things that make Nick happy. I feel even more willing to make a bigger effort to do those extra little things that bring a smile to his face. And thereby, I experience a greater sense of personal happiness too.
For example, when we remember to bring his toy airplanes with us while going visiting, he is more willing to stay longer rather than constantly asking to go back home. Taking the time to put on a CD that he likes to listen to gave me a few minutes to think about what I wanted to write about tonight. This evening he had a wonderful time listening to John Denver songs with our friends, Allen and Leonie Hunt, who are visiting here in Ireland with us. Many of the songs were not well known and I got the opportunity to hear some amazing songs for the first time, to my delight.
Just because I have accepted the job of caring for my son, it doesn’t mean that my life is all work. I experience many joyful moments for which I am grateful. It is true that some days I have to be more diligent to recognize those moments as they are not always immediately obvious, but it is worth the effort to notice and notate those experiences. Besides, I have noticed that included with all of this celebrating, we have cake. And that is always good.
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