Counting God’s Blessings on my 50th Birthday!
One amazing Husband who loves me insanely, cares for me always, and is proud of me.
Two extraordinary Sons who inspire me, whom I’ll always be proud to call them our own.
Three unforgettable Dogs we’ve called family, and two flew half around the World!
Four dearest older Siblings I had the privilege to grow up with and learn from them all.
Five Little People in our family, all under 5, who bring a new sense of wonder and joy!
Six fabulous Jobs that I’ve enjoyed doing that have molded me into who I am today.
Seven International Job Transfers that forever changed the course of our family’s life .
Eight School Teachers who had a tremendously positive influence on my kids growing up.
Nine shades of blue, I can count inside our home. Just love how calming the color blue is.
Ten Homes we’ve lived in temporarily and/or permanently since we’ve been married.
Eleven Minutes to the nearest town but we now live in such a peaceful countryside home!
Twelve School Photos of the boys from K-12 from all the schools they ever attended.
Thirteen Trips to Argentina with the boys to spend Christmas with our family.
Fourteen Argentine Provinces I’ve visited so far. Such an awesome place to visit!
Fifteen US Sates we’ve visited so far. So many different places to see and learn from.
Sixteen Countries we’ve visited so far. The world is a wonderful place, full of beauty!
Seventeen I was 17 when I took my first horseback riding lessons! So fun!
Eighteen years to learn that: “Not for school but for life we learn” -Seneca. HS Graduation!
Nineteen is how old my youngest son is. What a remarkable young man! Such a blessing!
Twenty going on 21-the amount of years we’ve been Expatriates. Most of it a fun cool ride!
Twenty One is the age of my oldest son. What a gift to our family! His music inspires me!
Twenty Two is my Husband’s Birthday! So glad he was born or we never would’ve met!
Twenty Three Flying hours is the trip to Argentina and back. What a gift to visit everyone!
Twenty Four Christmas Eve’s I’ve spent with my husband. What a gift he is to me.
Twenty Five years ago I met my husband at work! I didn’t know men like him still existed!
Twenty Six months apart our two sons were born. Brotherhood means friendship to them!
Twenty Seven is the day we got married! What a blessing that day was -we still are!
Twenty Eight At 28 I became a Mom. My first baby: what a miracle! Our son is still a gift!
Twenty Nine At 29 we moved to New York! Visited at least 29 different places in NYC!
Thirty I had my 2nd Son. What a precious baby! Motherhood: the best job I’ll always have.
Thirty One Members in my husband’s family. Such a fun mix. Such great people to love!
Thirty Two Members in my family. Such a great bunch to love and share our lives with!
Thirty Three minutes of prayer and meditation is what I try to do every day. Most days.
Thirty Four At 34 we moved to England the first time! What a great career opportunity!
Thirty Five At 35 I took a business class and started my online business in England!
Thirty Six At 36 we moved from England to New Jersey! What a privilege to be back home!
Thirty Seven At 37 I studied to become a Professional Organizer. Loved every minute of it!
Thirty Eight At 38 I worked as a Professional Organizer and learned that less is more!
Thirty Nine At 39 being a Mom and working was so fun! Watching our kids grow up so fast!
Forty Is such a great age! We did so much as a family together. Boys had a lot of Soccer!
Forty One At 41 we moved to England again and lived there 2 ½ years. -Challenging years!
Forty Two the days it rained in England in a month! -Just kidding! Growth & recovery times.
Forty Three At 43 when we moved from England to Virginia! What great weather!
Forty Four miles a day we drove the boys to school and back. Great talks with the boys!
Forty Five At 45 I wrote my first book. What an honor it was for me to share my story.
Forty Six was the number of hours I volunteered at the Hospital every month. What a joy!
Forty Seven is around the number of cousins we have in our family tree! Wow!
Forty Eight At 48 I became a Recovery Coach and published my second book!
Forty Nine At 49, the Pandemic hit. Still by God’s grace I could publish my third book!
Fifty One of the unforgettable birthdays you are blessed to even attend! So so grateful to God for my life!
When I wrote this list, I was mindful of being grateful for God’s blessings these 50 years so far. Jean-Baptiste Massieu once said: “Gratitude is the memory of the heart.” If anything, practicing gratitude has taught me to keep a close gauge not only on my heart but on my thoughts as well. In the end, we all get a mixed bag of breaks in life. Some are good, and others take time to heal. Yet to sift through my experiences and be grateful for the ones that taught me the most has continued to be a purifying process. The rest I just had to learn to let go of.
Do you have a list of blessings in your life or things you are grateful for? Maybe you haven’t lived so many years, but your list is longer. The opposite could be true as well. At any rate, I’ve seen that in life, we’ve all had setbacks. The Light and the shadows live side by side. Apart from being my birthday today, it was also two years my sister had passed. I still miss her, but I celebrated her life today right before blowing out my birthday candles.
I hope this blog inspires gratitude in your life. Gratitude is an elevated emotion that brings more joy and less stress to our thought life. It knows you didn’t just “somehow” make it through. You are grateful that it was “Someone” who was holding you through adversity.
All my best to you, and thank you all who sent kind greetings on my birthday!
Maria A. Mansfield
Author: “Life Is Worth Gettin Better,” “Honoring Your Recovery,” and “Tu vida merece que te mejores”