By Marcee Murray King
It’s the Month of Marcee! 38 glorious days where I celebrate myself! It started as a small joke, and grew until now it is something I look forward to each year.
Years ago, I had fallen into some trap where I thought that I needed some sort of validation from others on my birthday, hoping that others would care and do something for me, making it super special for me. Reality check: As a grown-ass adult, my birthday is really not that special to anyone but me. Why was I looking for this external validation, and why wasn’t I celebrating me for myself?
I honest-to-dog struggle with remembering everyone’s birthday. Each year I have to ask my daugther when my son and my husband’s birthdays are (theirs are two days apart, January 10 and 12).
I lose such track of time on a daily basis that once I called my daughter on the 19th of October and wished her happy birthday. Hers is on the 21st. One of our anniversaries is on the 20. so I not only confused her birthday and our wedding anniversary, but I also screwed that screw-up up, calling her two days early. With other friends and family I can remember their birthdays over and over throughout the days leading up to it and inevitably forget to call on the day of.
Why would I expect others to care so much about mine when I struggle with remembering everyone else’s, including the most important people in my life? And that was when I realized that I can treat myself like a fairy princess on my own birthday. I started planning what I wanted to do. I gave up expecting others to make it special for me.
Fall is my favorite season….and my birthday is October 2. And then there are our two wedding anniversaries: the first one is on September 13—originally a Friday—when my long-time partner and father of our almost-one year old and I got married by the Justice of the Peace; and October 20, our “spiritual” ceremony—an old-fashioned pagan handfasting and meal—was a gift from our friends the day before our daughter’s first birthday. It was wonderful! They picked out a dress for me to wear, prepared the space, planning the whole thing including songs and food. All we did was show up. BOOM! I recommend it to anyone—let your friends plan your wedding and you don’t do a damned thing. It was perfect!!
Over five weeks, 38 days from September 13 through October 20, we have two wedding anniversaries and my birthday in the middle. All times to celebrate and nurture and myself.
And so the Month of Marcee was born.
Sometimes it is a bit longer if something special to do comes up, but never shorter. This year it was going to be 40 days (an auspicious number) because we were going camping two days before, over the weekend, but weather has forced us to cancel that, so it will go ahead and start on the 13th. One year I had a band to go hear the week after, so I declared the month extended.
What do I do during this glorious five week, 38 day month?
Well, it isn’t all fun and games. It’s actually a lot of loving-kindness and compassionate self-discipline rolled up together. Really, I believe it is how I should live every day, but since I don’t, focusing on doing the best I can by me for 38 days every year is a great start!
This year I am going to gift myself with time to do more art… Hmmm, should I maybe gift myself a bit of time every day? Or a longer block of time once or twice during the week? Each time I think to myself, “I don’t have time to do anything creative because I have xyz to do” I will turn it around and say, “It’s the Month of Marcee, so it is okay to feed your creative side and carve out some time to draw, paint, bead…”
I need to do a bit more cooking than I have done the last two months because I have been so busy/distracted, so will plan some new recipes to cook that I haven’t made before.
“Because it is the Month of Marcee, I need to really pay attention to our physical health and nurture my husband Mark and myself with some amazing food going into a winter that may be a challenge…” slowing down enough to do some meal planning again.
I’m choosing not go out to hear music like I always do this month due to The Corona, but I can have plenty of loud dance parties for one. There will be definitely more dancing during the month! I will tell myself, “Dancing is a great way to celebrate this glorious month and is so good for you in so many ways, Marcee! Do more of it!” as I turn on an old Madonna album.
I’ll commit to walking with our dog, Nigel, in our woods more often too instead of telling myself that I have too much to get done. That would be such a treat for me and him, nurturing us both on so many levels.
Slacking on my meditation practice the last few months (it’s been rough here lately, but that’s another story…) I’ll tell myself, “Marcee, this winter may be a challenging one for you with the chaos in the world and the election around the corner—take care of yourself and get yourself mentally prepared for whatever comes our way.”
I have never been much of a sweets eater, but something snapped in me when The Corona started and for some weird reason, I began eating—craving—sweets like I never have in my entire adult life. It is actually a little embarrassing, but I have learned to make one good and easily toyed-with cake during these last few months. Still, I have gained 10 pounds with The Corona and all these sweets aren’t doing me any good, so I treat myself as I would a child I love, telling myself “I know I want more sweets, but they aren’t healthy for me and since it is the Month of Marcee I really do need to be all-about ME and pass on this sugar for a while.”
Simply put, I make everything, every day, all about me. How I react, how I cook, my meditation and yoga practice, how I celebrate, how I pout. Me. Me. ME!
And in truth, during the Month of Marcee, I am more likely to not pout and instead ask myself, “Marcee, do you really want to waste one day of this glorious fall Month of Marcee pouting over something silly?!?” and turn it around, making my day better.
Because why waste a minute on petty things in of the glorious Month of Marcee?
Editor: Dana Gornall
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- Snapshots of Meditation: Marcee Murray King - September 9, 2021
- How I Became a Yoga Teacher (and How I Forgave my Birth Mother) - November 15, 2020
- A Month for Me: Lovingkindness & Being Good to Myself - September 14, 2020