I find it interesting how many people try to hide how old they are. A couple of people, while posting birthday messages on my Facebook page yesterday, gave me younger than I am ages. I'm proud to say that I'm now 34 years old and proud of it! Admittedly, part of that confidence is the fact that no one believes me when I tell them how old I am (they think I'm younger...or at least act like they think that to make me feel better about myself). My secret? Well, I have two: 1) Thank you mom for your amazing bone structure, and 2) I spend a lot of time with people who are younger than me, so I don't worry as much as others and tend to be more laid-back than others my age. Perspective is a huge thing.
Do I stress and worry? Um, do bears fart in the woods? (That's a yes, in case you don't know.) But I also know that there are few things that I can control. Some things just "aren't in my boat". I can control what I teach my students and how much work I do on my own studies, but I can't control how much time my students spend writing their papers or what grade I get on my own assignments. I can only do my best and leave it in the hands of others. If I fail a class, or my students, will the apocalypse occur? Of course not! Although, I would like to complete grad school with my 4.0 GPA intact. (I haven't done that well in my grades since elementary school!)
So, I received wonderful gifts, flowers, and birthday wishes that brightened my day. And from myself to myself? Well, I'm giving myself the gift of health. Let me explain this. I don't do New Years Resolutions. I don't believe in resolving to do something just because everyone else is doing it. I've never been a real follower -- one of the consequences of being raised by a father who wanted to make sure his daughters were independent and could take care of themselves (did I mention I rewired a chandelier last week? Um, yeah.). So instead of New Years Resolutions I make Birthday Resolutions. This is a gift that I give myself. It makes me really stop and consider what I want and also lets me gauge how I feel and what I think about myself. What are my weaknesses? Areas of improvement? etc?
Now, I'll be the first one to admit there are A LOT of things I could change about myself. However, this year I figure health is one that is important. My schooling is coming to a close and my life will be in flux, but what I can control, and should be mindful of, is my personal health. Eating better (less processed foods and more vegetables) and moving more (rollerblading, walking the dog, jogging, etc.) will both help me physically, but mentally as well. The better I feel the more productive and happier I will be.