Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A birthday list

Today is my birthday. I am an utter fool for birthdays, believing that it's important to move through the world with joy, so taking one day a year to celebrate your own existence is a worthwhile endeavor.

This year, as in other years, on my birthday I'm writing a list of things I am grateful for, one for each year of my life. This year I was moved towards a simpler list, though I think it is no less meaningful; this may be in part because I didn't want to repeat myself too much as those previous lists are still quite valid. In any case, I hope some of these resonate with you.

Thank you world.

  1. Love. The opportunity to love and be loved.
  2. And like! Distinct and important.
  3. And dislike too - the chance to be an adult and work it through.
  4. Mistakes. The chance to try again.
  5. Taking the last walk with Brother Blue.
  6. The sound of wind in trees.
  7. The scent of the ocean.
  8. The taste and comfort of Red Label tea with milk and honey.
  9. The feel of my lover's skin. 
  10. Hugging and being hugged.
  11. The myriad shapes of clouds.
  12. Writing. 
  13. Reading.
  14. Music. 
  15. Especially the Beatles.
  16. The occasional wisdom to take the next breath.
  17. Kind strangers.
  18. Overheard conversations.
  19. Trees. And other plants, fungi, lichens. The slow, growing things of the world.
  20. Animals. Mammals, fish, insects, all living things. Even mosquitoes who have their place in the world.
  21. Good cries.
  22. Well-told stories. Both hearing and telling.
  23. Museums and the arts in general.
  24. Being heard.
  25. Wild acts of hope and guerrilla art.
  26. Wild places that I will never see.
  27. Languages I will never know.
  28. Laughing until I can't breath.
  29. The opportunity to help others.
  30. Working at a problem until I solve it.
  31. Or until I ask for help.
  32. Forgiveness.
  33. Creativity and creation. 
  34. Trying and failing and trying again.
  35. Work. Financial security.
  36. Completing things.
  37. My home. 
  38. Playing. Kites. Toys. 
  39. Cooking.
  40. Naps.
  41. The sound of my own breath - at night, underwater through SCUBA, in this moment.
  42. My body.
  43. Life. I am so grateful for this life.
And one for the years to come - I am grateful for you, for the connections I have in this world. Thank you.

Oh, and yes, the little girl at the top of this post is me. I don't know, have I changed that much?

(c)2010 Laura S. Packer Creative Commons License


  1. Well, hey and happy birthday to you! Came here by way of storyspace and since I landed here today of all days I just had to say hello. Hope you had a wonderful day. Enjoyed my first massmouth event at Johnny D's last night, so I was looking around at what else Boston had to offer. Perhaps I will see you when you are featured at StorySpace.
    Many happy returns to you!


  2. I read THIS post today and just LOVE, LIKE (no dislike, tho I like that you are grateful for dislikes) and ADMIRE you. I also HURT with you. NO WHERE to the level of what you must be feeling but it is just so sad that hulk of genie won't rise up out of a magical vase and be with us again. Keep talking TO him. I certainly plan to. I feel like he KNOWS - or is learning - cool stuff now that maybe he'll share. Though I have to admit being fully delighted with all he shared. Grateful simply to have crossed his path. I can't imagine how hard it is right now. Cry, Laugh. Rage. Call night or day and I'll do it with you anytime. xoxoxo


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