Significant Birthday Celebrations are a Rite of Passage

Significant Birthday Celebrations are a Rite of Passage image

Precious memories are evoked at a significant birthday celebration. The memories carry such strong messages on relationships and life events that for no reason were shelved but are now given permission to be dusted off and enjoyed once more. It’s a rite of passage and those memories should never again be hushed into a dark space and forgotten. 


Recently I attended an event of a couple celebrating their 70thyear.  This couple preferred small groups of friends gathered to enjoy each other’s company, and over a wine, relive many memories that most had forgotten. 

Memories are inspirational

It was amazing and inspiring to hear the individual memories that people had retained and held close for decades. Once a memory was retrieved from its charnel, it lived as vividly as before. One particularly touching one was the white gold ring with a small diamond given by two sisters to a third (and younger) sister. The ring was produced, and it was evident that this ring had been worn and cherished for 45 years. The older sisters struggled to remember and couldn’t believe they had not noticed the ring being worn, and yet, the younger sister had worn it lovingly and thankfully. How excited they were when many other such memories associated with that time became stimulated and oozed from the three sisters. 


Relationships and life messages are so important to the younger members of the family. It reminded me of a client a few years ago, who asked me to write a letter that she could give to family members and friends who were important to her on her 80thbirthday. 


A Letter of Life Celebration

We called the letter ‘a letter of life celebration’ but you could also call it an ethical will. The client talked about how she wished she could live her life backwards and could use the attitudes and knowledge that she has today to help her lead a fuller life. She spoke about the wisdom of considering other people’s perspective and their journey and this understanding, she said, has made her wiser person. ‘It’s not about giving children more, it’s about giving them more understanding and experiences’ she said. Her words were much appreciated by her family and the younger generation listened intently to her every word. 

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A few hints

If you are attending a significant birthday celebration for someone you love, you may like these short hints to help your own memory.

·       Ask their permission to record some important stories.

·       Have a notepad and pencil handy.

·       Record their voice with some of their stories.  

·       Take people aside and do some short recordings about the guest of honour.

·       Take lots of photos.

·       Put your photos into a book and package your audio recordings so it can be retained and appreciated by all and future generations.  You will be glad you did. 


Call if you need help

If you have a family member about to enjoy a significant birthday, tell them about the idea of a letter of celebration or ethical will. You can help them write it and perhaps read it for them at the celebration or you can get it printed and given to participants as a memento. 

If you need help, look at our list of experienced members and give them a call. 

If you are having trouble remembering and recording your life memories, give me a ring and we can do it together. 

 

Rose Osborne

Write My Journey     m: 0407 487 495

Experienced writer, dedicated listener and passionate life story teller. 

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