Declaration of Celebration

Have you ever made a Declaration of Celebration? If you haven’t, I highly recommend trying it. It gives you the chance to focus on the positive things in your life, helping them get bigger and more powerful until they run the negative thoughts into the ground. Trust me, I know.

When I turned 50, I was determined to turn my life around. I must confess, my 30s were a nightmare. My 40s were even worse. I wasn’t even sure I would make it to 50, and neither did many of my friends.

But I kept thinking to myself, “If I can only make it to 50, maybe things will get better.” So, as I found myself crawling toward 50, I started planning my life after fifty and what it would look like.

I started by making a Declaration of Celebration. I promised myself that my gift to myself would be to celebrate my birthday every single day for 50 days in a row instead of just one day. I called it “Fifty Days of Cheryl.” Every single day, I would honor myself in some small way, give myself positive affirmations, and treat myself with the same respect and consideration that I treated other people.

I was so excited about my idea that I shared it with all of my friends and even my husband, because even just saying it out loud made me feel empowered and optimistic. I didn’t start the Fifty Days of Cheryl on my birthday, but 2 days before, because that was the day that my girlfriends gave me a big party, complete with a red tiara.

It was the best party I ever had. Even a bunch of fireman showed up. I thought they were the entertainment, and so did a lot of the other women, as we looked around trying to figure out who hired them. It’s not my thing, but I was deeply touched that my friends thought of everything, until the firemen started to usher us out of the building. Apparently they really were firemen, and we had to vacate the premises.

Fortunately, the fire was a false alarm, and we sent the guys on their way with slices of birthday cake to take with them. And it gave us even more to celebrate, since the restaurant didn’t burn down and no one got hurt.

On the 10th Day of Cheryl, I got the stomach flu. Still staying positive and optimistic, I decided to drop the day and start the count again the following day when I felt better. Unfortunately the little stomach bug was also celebrating Fifty Days of Cheryl, and it hung on for a week. The good news was that it didn’t hang on for the entire fifty days. Boom! Another reason to celebrate.

It’s important to stay positive and look for the good things that life has to offer, no matter how big or how small. And, I celebrate every birthday with the Days of Cheryl, adding another day every year. It’s hard to believe how many years have passed since I turned fifty. But then, that’s just one more thing to celebrate, don’t you think?