What Is It About Birthdays?

This year, mine was a Friday the 13th, full moon kinda day.

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Peter Kvetny on Unsplash

This year, I’m adding Italy.

It’s been a lifelong dream to go there, for the art (I cried when I saw a Michelangelo sculpture in the Louve), the people, the food and the wine. I had planned on celebrating one of the “ending in zero” birthdays there, but that hasn’t happened. So here I go, on an odd year, fulfilling a dream.

Don’t hostels have age limits? As in, aren’t you too old?

I’m not too proud to stay in a hostel, although my sister did ask me, “Don’t hostels have age limits?” They don’t. However, I am pretty sure I might fall out of a top bunk getting up to pee in the middle of the night. Then there is the CPAP machine. Will there be a plug? Will the kids in the hostel dorm laugh? All things considered, I need at least a single room with a twin bed.

The grass is greener and the sea is bluer.

That’s kind of a theme of a large part of my life. There have been times I’ve been mistaken that the grass is greener on the other side. I feel sure Italy and it’s grass won’t disappoint, but I want to see all the shades of green before hunkering into a bunk. It definitely does look as if the sea is bluer at least in Cinque de Terre, even though a room there costs the same for three nights as my small apartment does for five nights in Florence.

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Photo by Ansgar Sheffold on Unsplash

So, there is money to consider. And stamina.

I make my living sitting face to face with clients, although I could do video sessions while overseas. But I’m not going to. I’m going to imagine I am not a psychotherapist, and will practice being more of a writer instead. Still, so far with Medium I am earning about enough for a really good mani-pedi a month. So, even though the money I am using for the trip is mostly money I saved for this express purpose (partly by using the app Qapital), there needs to be money to pay October’s rent when I return.

Lingua franca or Italian?

Then there is the exchange rate to figure out, and the fact that I speak fairly understandable Spanish, but only phrase book Italian. (I recommend the app DuoLingo to practice or learn a language.) English is the lingua franca of the world, but I love being surrounded by people speaking languages other than English. Since Spanish and Italian and English all came from the same Romance language roots, I do fairly well reading, and can pick up the basics fairly quickly. Besides, using DuoLingo and Rosetta Stone makes me use neurons I haven’t used in awhile, and that is good for my brain. Plus, maybe I’ll find romance using a romance language. Why not? It happens in all those movies of solo women in Italy.

Birthday reflections and resolutions.

While the Italy trip will be jump start on the next year, it takes more to answer the questions in the beginning of this article. However, Italy is a great metaphor for what has worked, what hasn’t, how I want to serve myself and others, what I want to change and what I want to add.

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Puveda Productions on Unsplash

Psychotherapist, Hypnotherapist. Leans Left. Mindfulness practioner before it was cool. M.Ed., LPC. Carolsantafe93@gmail.com.

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