A child’s first birthday is full of excitement; not for the child, because they have no concept of what a birthday is. It’s just another day – until it’s not.
People show up carrying armloads of bright colored paper. They put you in your highchair, but there’s no food dish, no sippy cup. Instead there is a thing with fire on it; something they’ve told never to touch. They smash their lips together and tell you to “blow” but you don’t know what that means.
They sing a song, but some of the noise makes your ears hurt. Then they take away the fire and tell you to eat the big thing in front of you. It doesn’t look like anything you’ve ever seen. They have been trying to teach you to eat with a spoon, but now they want you to stick you hands in the thing. You hesitate, but take a bite, and oh my! You want to eat it forever.
But then they take away the wonderful thing and scrub your face with that cold wet cloth that you hate. You get pulled from your chair and plopped on the floor in the middle of those bright colored shapes. They tell you to “tear the paper” but you don’t want to, because you got in trouble for tearing paper just the other day. You decide to reach toward the color and everyone gets excited and claps their hands. They tell you to, “keep going.” You grab the paper and no one gets mad, so you keep going. There are things inside the paper, but it feels good to crunch the paper that you don’t care about what’s inside.
Then it’s all gone. The people, the paper, the thing you got to eat, and they put you to bed. When you wake up, it’s just another day.
Fast forward sixty plus years. That birthday is just another day. Yes, there may be singing, there may even be something good to eat. But it doesn’t really matter, because at some point, you realize that every day, even just another day is a blessing, and you are thankful to have it.