Friday, August 23, 2013

The Benefits of Being Five Years Old

by Rev. Laura Barclay

My niece, Téa, recently turned five and wore this fabulous number. If you can't tell, she is wearing red cowboy boots, a floral skirt with a blue plastic grass skirt on top, a green shirt with flowers on it, a lei, and a multi-colored, peace symbol headband. And to that I say, rock it! More than one, partygoers kept looking at her and saying, "I wish I could still dress like that."

In addition, she completed an art project, which consisted of painting her own treasure box, fit as many of her friends as possible in a giant chair, ate copious amounts of pizza and cake, and played on giant bouncy slides and castles for an hour. She had a blast and it was fun to watch. 

Remember when birthdays started to go downhill after 21 or so? At 25 you could rent cars at a cheaper rate, but that was the last real milestone of adult freedom. Now, birthdays seem to be ignored due to shame ("I'm 29, I swear. Shut up!") or subdued due to indifference ("I think I'll just stay in. Nobody cares that I'm 52."). 

What if we just donned our grass skirts and went for it? Are we afraid people will judge us for having a good time on our birthdays? Afraid that people will think we are too old for that? We all deserve to be happy and celebrated as children of God. Our births are special, no matter if we are 5, 55, or 105.  

So, the next time you see a kid in a tiki, mermaid, or pirate outfit screaming, "Oh yeah, it's my birthday!", consider throwing a pirate-themed fiesta yourself. I might even help plan it with you if there's a cutlass and eyepatch for me! 

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