A different kind of birthday…

This past Saturday, my little one celebrated her 9th birthday. January 5th. Following the same pattern as the past few years since moving to the Central Coast, it was a bit of a challenge to find kids and folks to attend the at-home, old-fashioned, no-bouncy-house-Chuck E. Cheese party, held on the last weekend of Christmas vacation. However, similarly fashioned, enough people and kids did show up, including my mom and step-dad, and we enjoyed a fun afternoon of games, chattering, eating tacos, chips, and salsa, present unwrapping, and ultimately birthday brownies.

Every year Maycee’s birthday is the culminating event of the holidays for me. The weekend prior I frantically tear down red and green decorations in prepration of replacing them with whatever this year’s party theme is….and this year it was rainbow unicorns…bright and cheery….reminding me of my little one’s magical spirit. Another successful time was had, and Maycee was beaming from all of the heart-felt gifts, cards, and well wishes. 

Enjoying Maycee’s birthday cannot help but take me back to the early days of my pregnancy. Her due date was originally January 10th. Today is January 10th. Today I celebrate my own birthday of sorts…a sobriety birthday. The day that reminds me 14 years ago I hit the bottom of my drinking hole and made a decision to seek help. Maycee was supposed to be born on my sobriety birthday, and I remember when the doctor told me her due date I couldn’t believe it. The fact that she came into this world five days earlier doesn’t dissappoint in any way, however, as now I’m able to give each birthday its due attention and contemplation. Each one filled with special memories intertwined with struggle, hardships, fear, life, growth, freedom, and beauty.

I celebrate today that one day at a time, one minute at a time, and with God’s grace and guidance I’ve steered clear of the substance that takes me to unforeseen and dark places and stifles my ability to live fully. I celebrate today that my precious 9-year-old knows not the person I was so many years ago and has never seen her mommy under an alcoholic grip. I celebrate today the simple pleasures sobriety brings like treasuring a safe and good night’s sleep in my own bed as much as I celebrate the vast joys of lessons learned and strength gained by facing my disease, letting go of shame, and trudging forth towards that elusive “happy destiny” spoken of in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous.

I celebrate today so I can continue to celebrate more tomorrows, and I do not take lightly the path I’ve traveled. I retain a healthy fear of life as a drunk, and I stick with gratitude for what I have right now, right in this moment as much as possible.  There is nothing better than an “attitude of gratitude”. 

It’s a different kind of birthday, but a day to appreciate new life and new birth, nonetheless.


“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the willingness to know the difference.”

Thank you, God, for a glimpse of serenity and for 14 years of continued sobriety, and I pray for those like me, that they may trust the process and surrender to win.

One heart, mother and daughter. My gift to Maycee for her 9th birthday.

One heart, mother and daughter. My gift to Maycee for her 9th birthday.

Much love…XOXO-SWM


10 responses

    • Thanks, my dear friend. I wasn’t sure about sharing the news, but then I can remember when I was newly sober feeling so encouraged when birthdays were celebrated in meetings. Just hearing the years add up made me think “Maybe someday that’ll be me”. XOXO


  1. What an amazing and wonderful gift. I think there might be a blessing Maycee came early, so you might always celebrate each day as separate and special events in your heart.

    Congratulations on both. You are both lovely, I adore the heart.

    • Thanks, Valentine! And, yes, this is exactly how I look at our different birthdays now. First of all, I was sooooo ready for Maycee to be born that I don’t think I could’ve waited ’til the tenth regardless, ha, ha. My body was bursting! And, second, it’s important to remember my sobriety date and to have that time to reflect and contemplate what it means to live this kind of life today. I’m just so grateful! And, the heart necklace, well, it was just what she and I both needed as the long days apart during the work week are tough-we miss each other.I’ve been wearing my half of the heart every single day since Maycee opened it a week ago Saturday.Thanks for always reading and sharing.Much love.XOXO


  2. Beautiful words, Kasey. Happy Anniversary my dear, special friend. May God’s grace continue to be you & your blessings continue to abound. And Happy Birthday to my little Capricorn friend!! Looking forward this year’s possibilities for all of us! xoxox NY.

    • Thanks so much sweet NY. Hmmm, so your birthday is this month, too? Must email me the date so I can mark my calendar! My dad’s was the 7th, and Maycee’s dad’s is today. Busy, busy time of year for sure, and so much to look forward to. I road my horse both days this weekend…first time I’ve been able to really ride and not be in pain since becoming ill. I was in pure heaven in the crisp, cool 40-50 degree temps and slight breeze blowing. It was absolutely spiritual and the perfect sobriety gift! Must email each other and catch up! XOXOXO-Kasey


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