Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to me on 1/20. Yes that's right, Rayme Bernick, that is my day. I have never celebrated that day in my adult life, not even with my husband and children but revelation has pushed me to share my story. 

As an adopted adult, I have immeasurably struggled with the balance between celebration of another year and the emotional baggage that comes along with your biological parents not choosing you. When I looked down at Charlotte as a fresh newborn, the pain of even comprehending the depth of that adoption struggle was almost too much to entirely understand. 

How do you hurdle the emotional vs logical points in an ongoing internal and emotional battle? This question is not rhetorical like it would have been even just 1 year ago. 
This year I have an answer.

You surround yourself with love, laughter, support. The ones who stay have chosen you and the ones who go are those you must not have needed anyway. 

Life is such a tumultuous journey and with that come choices about which way to turn when it gets tough and what you do to make your life better. Always choose better. 
When I had our own kids I consciously and actively chose them. I choose my husband because truthfully, he chose me first and loved me when he didn't have to. I choose them every day in every way to do better and be better for them.

If you're reading this and you're in a pit...see this as my way of climbing down into it with you, showing you my own very real demons and being the most vulnerable I know how. 
Esteem every person you meet on your same level or higher. Nobody is perfect and we all have emotional baggage.

My 'happy birthday 2016 revelation' is that our baggage doesn't have to weigh us down...that there is freedom when you choose to climb out of the pit. Be there for others by climbing down into their pit, tell them your own struggles and climb out together.

Celebrate your years with your spouse and children.

Life goes on whether you're on board or not. "So you'd better get on board because the train is leaving the station" as my dad would say.

Cheers to being fully on the train.