Happy birthday to me! I turn 36 today right around high noon Cambridge time (that's where I was born). So that makes me a cusp child, between Cancer and Leo. The cusp of oscillation to be specific. For people who know me personally, perhaps this additional factoid explains some things about me a bit better.
Increasingly over the years I have come to value the gifts of an experience shared with people I care about more than physical gifts. (This is compared to when I was a child and my parents needed to implement the one-month birthday rule so I wouldn't start talking about what I wanted more than one month in advance. That being said, a perfect present is still a wonderful thing to behold, and while I've scaled it down considerably, I have no illusions of being so zen that I've completely transcended materialism :))
In keeping with this shift, I have increasingly come to think about my goals or resolutions in terms of less tangible things. I'm usually a bit more focused on making resolutions or goals around my birthday than I am at New Years simply because of my general distaste towards feeling so common and sheep-like to be doing something at the exact same time as so many other people.
While there are some smaller goals or milestones that I'm thinking about, there are two over-arching themes I'm thinking about today - quotes that have been resonating with me for the past few months. I think they're great quotes so I figure I should share them:
From Chasing Daylight: "The only decision to focus on is the one you can still make."
Most people I know are much better at this than I am - one friend even had a perfect comment on this when he said something to the effect of "I live like I don't have a rear view mirror."
While I think there are clearly things to be learned from experience, for me, I know that I spend too much time looking in that rear-view mirror, trying to adjust the view by mentally re-playing the scene, trying to figure out how to fix things, letting myself wallow in regret about things I should have done differently, wandering off into fantasy-land about how great some road untaken might have turned out. Instead, my goal for the year ahead is to focus on what's in front of me - what I want to be doing, what impact I want my time to be having, who I want to be and who I want to be spending time with; essentially making the life ahead of me the one I want, rather than worrying so much about the one that's behind me.
And, the final quote for my birthday post, and my other birthday mantra for myself:
From Jonathan Swift (also quoted in Chasing Daylight, I believe): "May you live every day of your life."