JULY is my birthday month. I don’t usually celebrate my birthday. It passes by just like any usual day. But for the past few years, things have been different. Not that I now have glamorous parties, but I have become happier as a person even if I don’t have any celebration.
Before, I felt sad whenever my birthday comes. Aside from being a year closer to becoming elderly, I felt alone and so unloved. During those years, I even forgot how my childhood birthdays were like because I was too focused on my miserable years.
But things changed around the early months of 2013, after being so depressed for years because of my crumbled marriage. God showed me that life is not meant to be lived in defeat. Yes, my marriage ended, but my life hasn’t. Life has more to offer than sadness and tears.
God called me (us) to a good life, not for evil or sadness. In Jeremiah 29:11, He promises us a future full of hope. Not a depressive day to day life living off a wrecked past.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. – Jeremiah 29:11
Life was different for me since 2013. I started to look at life hopeful and filled with dreams again. It was a few months before I turned 34 that I have finally realized that I am living my life wrong. I was not living the life God has called me to enjoy.
So, what did I do? What are the tangible things that changed? Here are the things that I experienced during my birthday with this renewed perspective I have in life. It’s really nothing much compared it with others, but for me, all of these were life-changing!
July 2013. Age 34. Instead of celebrating my birthday, I went back to school and took up Certificate in Teaching. I decided to become a teacher. I wanted to enrich myself and bring back a little self-confidence in me. January of 2014, I took the board exam and I passed. I am now a licensed teacher!
My Classmates in Certificate in Teaching
Teacher in Action
July 2014. Age 35. I went to Cebu. Took up a TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language) Certification Program. I lived in Cebu City for a month and celebrated my birthday with my classmates at Mactan Shrine.
Some of My Classmates in TESOL
July 2015. Age 36. I went to Vietnam, my first international travel. I taught English for three months. I gained new friends and had a birthday party thrice!!! I visited a lot of places in Vietnam aside from the city where the school I volunteered was located!
Birthday Cake Given by My Professional Students
Karaoke Party Given by My Co-Teachers
Karaoke Party with My New Friends in Vietnam
July 2016. Age 37. Not all in the month of July, but definitely that year was a blast of local travels! I went to Davao and Dapitan Cities for the first time. Then went to Iligan City twice, the second time was with my kids which launched the #WanderFourLife. Then went to Manila twice, the first was all related to our new homeschool adventure and for Blogapalooza, and the second was the Vivo Launching. Amazing, right?!
Me in Dapitan City
With Fellow CDO Bloggers in Manila for Vivo Launching
Simple Birthday Dinner with Family and Friends
July 2017. Age 38. Well, I have nothing much to do this month as we have already done a lot earlier this year. My children and I went on a staycation twice and we visited Bacolod City for almost two months just this summer. We enjoyed visiting tourist and food spots. And we have more planned late this year… watch out for that!
#WanderFourLife at The Ruins, Talisay City
BUT WAIT!!! I am not ending this month without anything really. Check out my “Few of My Favorite Things – A Birthday Giveaway” on Facebook. It’s my birthday month and I decided to give away few of my favorite things to my Facebook Page Likers. Go and check it out!
Just like as one of my favorite quotes says by C.S. Lewis, “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” I was already 33 years old when I woke up from a failed marriage. I got depressed and living in regret daily. Yes, I am way past my youthful years but God still answered my new goals and dreams. Not all, but most of it. God has a plan for me, He has a great and wonderful plan for me and also for you. Just decide to trust in Him, and life will never be the same again for you.
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis
At 38, a few more years before 40 and still not rich or with a big savings account, but I believed that I am forever changed and progressing daily as a person by the grace of God. And despite my shortcomings, I thankful for my parents, my children, and my close friends for staying with me during the time I shut them all out when I was depressed and lifeless. They made life bearable for me. I also thank the Lord for the many people He sent me so that I can experience all these wonderful blessings. God is so awesome!
So, do I still regret things? Yes, I still regret a few recent decisions I have, but I only do for a few days. Then face life again. I don’t show God my problems, I show my problems what a great God I have.
It’s never too late to start now. It’s never too late to dream again and to trust God.