Turning another year older can be a life altering experience.
Fortunately the other day, I had the pleasure of being a guest, celebrating a friend’s birthday. It wasn’t about me at all. And this friend is a ‘guy’, so even better. It was all about the fun, the people, and the wine.
It was a collection of Steve’s family and friends, newborns and grandmas and dear old dads in their 80’s. Real life.
Steve’s sisters prepared the food and pretty well did all the work. He is 50 you know…and it was kind of a big deal. He was all smiles from ear to ear. You could feel the joy he was feeling as he greeted each guest at the door. His 2 teenage kids were manning the ‘registration table’ and giving each of us our ‘name tags’. The whole atmosphere felt very ‘small town and homey’ in a very good way. It was like being curled up in a blanket watching your favourite movie-again. We only knew the guest of honour and his sisters so the name tags helped say ‘hello’.
What did bring everyone together was the photo booth that we brought (as his gift). For 3 solid hours I played voyeur. I witnessed the laughter, the smiles, the joy of the moment, the silliness, the “I don’t care what I look like just pose!” the babies on the laps, the grandparents wearing boas and fedoras as they snuggle with their grandchildren, the new families, the young couples…it was all there. Each took a keepsake of their experience and left a piece for Steve in his scrapbook to reflect upon later in private. Each participant expressed how much fun they had, and wanted to find another person to pose with. It was becoming an addiction, or perhaps endorphins were being released?
50th birthday parties are rare and surrounding yourself with those that you love and represent who you are, and how you got to this point, are a treasure. Giving them the opportunity to experience 15 seconds of joy and imprinting it on a piece of paper…well…it’s priceless!