Turning 38 + what I’ve learned about birthdays in my thirties

Ok, what is this behavior that we make dua for long healthy lives for our loved ones but every birthday we celebrate, we get sad that we’re getting “too old”? So silly, right! I’m making a promise to myself right now not to obsess over the number and instead focus on being grateful for all of these years I’ve been blessed with; when so many around us don’t get the chance. And also gratitude for all of the experiences, lessons & wisdom that can only come with age and more time spent in this world.

(If you need it, here’s a little age positive inspiration: And Bloom | Art of Aging Gracefully | Grombre. ALSO: via Cup of Jo, this post, this post & via my favorite Shehzeen, this post.)

some glimpses from our evening : handmade embroidered wall hanging from my girl, dinner with my two (I made biryani for myself ha & he made mutton chops), cake from whole foods + the party I walked into .. little things that don’t feel like little things when the years go by..

A few lessons I’ve learned about birthdays in my THIRTIES

>Instead of expecting our spouse or loved ones to make our birthday fun, I’ve realized that turning that energy on celebrating ourselves is such a better way to do birthdays. I LOVE IT SO MUCH.

Talked about it a little bit here, when Anya & I took this getaway to celebrate my birthday.

Also here when I hosted a craft night for my girlfriends for my birthday.

>Getting ready in a new-ish outfit makes me really get in the mood for the day (or new to me like when I wore my sister’s clothes last year).

>Instead of buying random gifts for loved ones when we all have literally everything we need, it’s so much better to let your husband (or family) know what you’d like for your birthday. I’ve done this for a few years now and it works perfectly for a more conscious, simpler lifestyle. I really don’t like owning too much stuff.

>To me birthdays are a great time for some self-reflection as well. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or written down even but just spending a little time (with chai) and just evaluating yourself, making intentions of what you’d like to do / how you’d like to be.. better in the coming year.

>I love how in our faith giving sadqa (donations) is the thing to do whether there is a happy occasion or sad one. Our birthday is a wonderful time to donate towards a cause we feel passionate about. I love how Facebook Causes helps getting friends to donate in such a simple way as well.

>Making a little time to pray two nafals to thank God and have a heart to heart about anything and everything.

>Lastly; I’ve realized that simple things can make the best ways to celebrate; my favorite meal, group video call with my family, taking my time & dressing up, waking up to a neat home, looking at my life with gratitude, my favorite dessert, savoring birthday messages from my friends, a fresh coat of nail color, flowers on my table ..

What I wore: Free People sweater (link) I found at Nordstrom Rack with old Loft jeans | Earrings : gift from my sister Nadiya from Saaj by G (similar ones here) | Necklace (old) : Forever21

Was super excited to pair them with my Meraki x Shehzeen khussas that had just arrived a few days ago & went so well with my outfit..

Thanks for reading.

Lots of love, Nataliya