On monday, I added my 38th ring to the tree of life. I celebrated my birthday in total Taurus style, aka in earthly leisure. I took the day off, went for a long jog with the dogs, lathered in luxury during a hot stone massage, went shopping for hours at value village, took in a late movie with my honeys, ate a slice of pizza and finished off the evening sharing my dad's homemade margaritas with friends. It was uneventful, stress-free and I let the day unfold as it wished. I had no expectations and no hard plans (except to make it to my massage on time).
Some years ago, before Warren and I got married, our beautiful friend Deb, took us on a 7 day hiking trip to help her with research for her thesis. We drove for hours and then hiked far in to a forgotten eastern oregon forest. During our trip, we cored so many trees I think we lost count. Deb showed us how to read the ages of the trees by counting the rings on the samples we had just cored. It struck me then that birthdays are the same way. The rings on these trees told the story of their lives. You could tell when the weather and environmental conditions were ideal, those rings were the biggest signaling years the trees thrived and grew rapidly. Other years, the conditions not so great and they struggled just to survive. Those rings were smaller.
Every year, I grow more as a person. As I grow wiser and learn from my mistakes, I celebrate each year by the thanking the spirits for teaching me and giving me the gift of another ring around the tree of life. If I could be cored like a tree, you would see that each of my rings tell the story of each year of my life. Some of my rings would show a year of intense learning and challenges, of extreme spiritual growth. Other rings would display when the planets were in some sort of better alighnment allowing me a year of easy living, not much growth, and not many challenges.
Being 36 and 37 were years that will always stand out for me. I encountered so many obstacles that in the end, as I digress, turned me into a much wiser person. I left a job I hated only to find the best job I've had so far. I said goodbye to two cat friends who left for the spirit world unexpectedly. I became a mom to a rescue dog. I took my relationship with Will's mom to another level. I got my first email from Will. I shed the pounds I forever been talking about losing. And on and on. Everything was a challenge for me at the highest level. I'm prepared now to be 38. And I have a feeling I'm going to enjoy it. So cheers to adding another ring to the tree of life. May we always have a story to tell about each ring that we add together to the tree of life.