My birthday is this week which made me think back on all the ways I’ve celebrated over the years. I’ve had some pretty incredible moments, but there’s one in particular that stands out as the winner.
Days before my 25th Birthday, I got this idea for a personal way to celebrate my life. I wanted to buy 25 of the brightest and most colorful helium balloons – one for each year of my life. Then I would write my most favorite life memories on some, my hopes for the future on some, and expressions of love an gratitude for people and past moments on the rest. Once finished, I would release all the balloons into the air as a way of releasing the past and unlocking my future.
A few hours before sunset, on the day of my Birthday, I did just that. My mom went with me and we bought Sharpies and all the balloons. We then drove to Cherry Creek State Park a few minutes from my house. I walked into the park with her and picked a spot in the grass where I would sit and start my expressions.
I wrote and reflected and went deep inside where only I had access too. One balloon at a time I wrote about the tough places I had been, the difficult decisions I had to make, the people I loved, the things I loved about myself, and so much more.
It took about an hour for me to write on all 25 balloons – but there was no shortage of things to say. I had come so far. I reflected on how I used to sit alone in my bedroom during high school – feeling alone, crying, wishing I could be through this downer period in my life. I really saw how far I had come. I finally knew who I was and where I wanted to go in life. I was, and still am, well on my way.
This birthday milestone birthday moment was all about recognizing my life – the good and the bad. Then, once finished, I stood up, took a deep breath, and released all of those balloons and memories high into the sky. I watched as they flew away toward the sunset. My memories and hopes for the future flying high with them.
An incredible release on a wonderful day. There is no one else I would have wanted by my side more than my mom – who stood by me through all of my teenager bad moods and my rise to the greatest version of me. I love you mom.