The Best Gift For My Milestone Birthday

The Best Gift For My Milestone Birthday. Lisa-Michelle Kucharz blows out candles surrounded by cakes and cupcakes.

Milestone birthdays are extraordinary! They can be a great time to reflect on achievements and goals you still want to accomplish, check off and add some things on your bucket list. Friends and family join you in marveling that you made it to another year around the sun, and they wish you an abundance of good things for a long time to come.

Like 10 years prior, I insisted that my tribe not buy me presents, especially balloons to protect the environment and gag gifts which I don’t really appreciate. I get it. I’m older, definitely in the realm of midlife. Today’s balloons are pretty. The jokes may be funny. They’ll be appreciated for a minute or two, but they’re not my thing. With many people struggling and organizations addressing important needs, I suggested they direct their generosity to help support worthwhile causes.

The results blew my mind. Unlike 2010, when I planned a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign for one charity, my circle chose the philanthropies to which they contributed in honor of my aging (or celebration of my life). I shared suggestions, but insisted the donations be meaningful for them.

In the end, the support ran the gamut of worthy causes with deep meaning for me, too, from environmental conservation to veteran services, from combatting hate to wildlife preservation, from sports opportunities for people with disabilities to Holocaust survivor services, from granting wishes for children with critical illnesses to access to specialized higher education and more.

Supporting organizations that make a positive difference in my honor was the best gift and the best way for my tribe to share their love with me and the world. The calls, texts, and posts were icing on the cake.

Thank you for making this gal feel special and loved on my milestone birthday and every day!