Today is my 41st birthday—how the heck did that happen?! I could have sworn I was still in my 30s! Last year I was in Seattle to mark my 40th birthday, and greatly enjoyed an amazing home-cooked meal with some of my favorite people in the world: Thomas, Mom, Norman (my birthday twin!), and Andi. The evening was quite carefully crafted to how Norman and I wanted—delicious food and even more delicious company. Looking back it definitely counts as one of the best birthdays of my life thus far.
What I appreciate about this year’s birthday is that I am again doing exactly what I want to ‘celebrate’ the day, but my plans for this May 1st are rather ordinary in comparison to last year: I am boiling some fresh beets to make a beet salad, and later today Thomas and I will ‘bug proof’ our apartment by installing netting on all the windows. I plan to wash my hair and do a load of laundry in our new (used) washing machine. And tonight we will go to Noa’s home for dinner. She is making me a quiche, bless her heart! All in all, I really can’t think of a better way to mark turning 41!
As I reflect on being another year older (and wiser, hopefully), I don’t feel physically any different than I did when I turned 40, l’hamdullah (thanks be to God). But most of the other elements of my life–my social life, my professional life, and my emotional, mental and spiritual states–are definitely different than they were last year. A year ago Thomas and I had our house on the market and were formally ‘nominated’ for Peace Corps service. We were quite certain we would leave our life in Bellingham, but we didn’t know what the future would be. Now we are living in Morocco. That’s quite an amazing birthday gift, I think. What a difference a year makes, eh?