Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Top 40 at 41 - What a Way to Celebrate a Birthday

I thought about what I wanted to post for my birthday blog. Images of Thor? Videos from Vampire Diaries? A list of my favorite books or characters? What about my favorite people? You see, in 41 years of living, I have a lot I could talk about (yes, no comments from the peanut gallery, I know I can talk) and as much as I tease others about being chatty, I really couldn't pick just any one thing to chat about. So I decided to make an I'm grateful list...I'm grateful to the life I've led for 41 years, the ups, the downs, the joys, and the sorrows.

So just what am I grateful for today?

I'm grateful for fantastic friends who cheer me up, who check on me when I go quiet, who support me, who offer advice time and again when I ask for it whether I take the advice or not--they aren't shy about sharing their thoughts with me. They kick me in the ass when I need it and tell me to chill. They are some of the greatest ladies in the world--cause they like me for me, warts and all.

I'm grateful for a daughter who couldn't be better if she tried. She's my biggest fan, and she's thoughtful, sweet, hopeful and encouraging. She dares me to life and she helps me look at the world through a less jaded telescope. She's made me a better person, because I want to be one. She's smart and she's sassy and damn if she doesn't keep me on my toes.

I'm grateful to the editors who took a chance on a woman who just wants to write and tell stories all day, every day. They give me kudos when I get it right and tweak me when I get it wrong. They pick apart the stories and find the plot holes and are unflinching in their desire to help me put the best book out there I can.

I'm grateful for the animals who have shared my life, from my beloved Max and Murray to the sweet Tannim and Vienna. I've had to say goodbye to so many over the years, but my fur babies keep coming back or we find new souls to join us. If you run into everyone you've ever known in the afterlife, I know mine is going to be bouncing puppies and disdainful cats and I can't tell you how all right I am with that.

I'm grateful to my readers whether they picked up my first book or my thirtieth. You make me smile and you support my dream--really, what's not to love about that?

I'm grateful to my grandmother, the woman who taught me to never give up--no matter how hard life kicks you. Get up and kick it harder right back. I wish she could have met my daughter, I wish she could see all the things I've done. Life wasn't easy for her, but she was one of the toughest and sometimes one of the meanest ladies I ever met. If I'm even half the woman she was--then I did okay.

40 kicked ass for me. I am looking forward to great things during 41. I never forget where I came from, I never forget the year of eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or worse, the year of not being able to afford more than ramen noodles. I haven't forgotten tough neighborhoods, and scrimping to buy a gallon of milk. I have never forgotten the sacrifices made to ensure I got to school on time or got the best education--or the trips, the fact that my grandmother didn't rely only on schools to teach me.

I haven't forgotten any of it and I'm grateful for it all--it's made me who I am. I am not just one thing or one event or one career--I am all of them. Good and bad, life's a journey and we're rocketing through it.

It's my birthday and I'll be sappy if I want to! Thank you all for being a part of my life. I literally wouldn't be here without each and every single one of you.



  1. What a great list! If you were here, I'd bake you a cake!!!

    Happy birthday--I hope it is half as magical and wonderful as you are.

    1. Awww! Thank you! I'm behaving myself and saving the cake for the next time I get to go to a conference with awesome carrot cake!

  2. Happy Birthday Heather! (Yes I know it was yesterday)

  3. Happy Belated Birthday, Heather! :)