If you look at social media, or a gift card shop, you’ll see that there are moments that we see celebrated more often, especially for women: engagements, marriage, pregnancy. Those are the moments you often see captured in photos posted on Instagram, moments you shout at the top of your lungs to the world, moments that are unequivocally about you. But these moments are more than that. When you celebrate, or when you choose to celebrate these events, you are reaffirming these events as major milestones of our lives and modern adulthood. And these – the determination of what life events are worth being considered as key milestones, and the attainment of them – also form an integral part of our identity, of how we perceive ourselves and others, (i.e. what are we lacking, are we whole, are we an anomaly, are we behind?!), and calculate our worth.
But it shouldn’t be that way.
Who we are and how we feel about ourselves should not be defined by this narrow range of socially acceptable milestones. (Yes, I admit they could be useful as a sociological framework, but not necessarily in our day-to-day lived experience). Our selves are shaped by many moments in life, some big, some infinitesimally small, some mundane and some exciting; but they all play a beautiful part in making us become who we are. In fact, some of the loudest and brightest moments in your life are the quietest, the most imperceptible to outside eyes. Those moments deserve to be celebrated too.
Since society has already told us what we should be celebrating (refer above) we thought we would provide a non-exhaustive list of more things we should be celebrating!
A – Avocado
It is notoriously hard to gauge the ripeness of an avocado, so if you manage to cut and consume one when it’s at its peak ripeness- congratulations! While you may not afford to get on the housing ladder due to your avocado habit, you have succeeded in not creating food wastage, while also getting to eat something delicious and nutritious!
B – Body positivity
We have spent our lives being told we need to look a certain way. But who actually defined those norms? Who decided what our ideal proportions should be? Kim Kardashian? She’s being cancelled anyway. And how can the world’s population of over 7 billion people, living in ~195 different countries with different climates and cultures be expected to look the same? We are all unique and should celebrate every part of that, including our perceived imperfections. It’s all part of the magic that makes you, YOU!
C – Cake by the Ocean or the pool or the park or anywhere really
If you know, you know.
D – Dogs
A dog will never let you down. A dog will always love you. And dogs always make us happier*. Let’s take a moment to celebrate these wonderful fluffs that make the world a better place!
(Some dogs we know, plus a cat cause they’re cute too)
*unless you are allergic to dogs, or have past traumas involving dogs. Also excludes dogs with rabies, cause rabies is scary
E – Education
Did you decide to go back to school? Study something because you have a passion for that field? Or because you want to change careers? Well done on you! Once we graduate from school/uni and start working, it’s so easy to let work and everyday adulting take over our lives and slowly, things that were once important to us (hobbies, longer term goals, learning) fall to the wayside. So well done for taking the initiative to pursue more education and learning!
F – Failure
Type failure in google and you’ll see a thousand motivational articles on the value of failure, and how failure is the hottest IT bag you must acquire if you ever want to achieve S-U-C-C-E-S-S. But even in the absence of success, having failed means you have tried, and you have the nerves to try – and that’s nothing to sneeze at. So go ahead and pour yourself a glass of champagne for that CFA level II you failed, the start-up that never got to any funding round, or that tiktok dance that you just can’t master.
G – Galentine
Celebrate your friendships! Celebrate that you somehow managed to keep a friendship going for a decade, despite both of your nonexistent texting habits! Or celebrate that you have formed friendships that are based entirely on a shared affinity for good memes.
H – Healing
Healing is one of the most underrated accomplishments around. The world would be a better place if we celebrated people who have taken the courageous decision to heal from things. Be it a bad relationship, a toxic job, an eating disorder, generational trauma or even just recovering from a rejection. The process is difficult, ugly and forces you to confront parts of yourself you don’t want to. But the person who comes out on the other side is a lighter, brighter and happier version of you. And all the credit goes to you!
I – Imperfection
Wabi sabi, the Japanese philosophy of accepting your imperfections and celebrating our life as it is, is having a moment. And rightly so. While we should endeavour to grow and become a better version of ourselves, striving for perfection is not only impossible, but it’s a surefire way to never be happy. And life’s too short to be miserable all the time.
Instead, let’s all learn from kintsugi, the Japanese art of mending broken pottery with gold. Rather than endlessly chasing after perfection, we might as well embrace and celebrate our flaws and imperfections. I also recommend putting on some bling bling
L – Leaving
Did you leave a toxic friendship? A stale relationship that is going nowhere? A job that slowly annihilates your soul? Well done, my friend!
O – Orgasm
Do we even need to elaborate here? You do you boo!
S – Strength
Did you manage to do a push up? Or somehow developed that mystical thing called core strength? Congratulations – that is truly impressive. Or take the other kind of strength – standing up for yourself and your beliefs, or the ability to carry on living, going to work despite setbacks you encounter, traumas and tragedies you’ve endured. That is real strength, and you have all our respect and admiration.
T – Therapy
Therapy is great. Someone is actually paid to listen to you complain. What could be better? We’d say nothing, other than maybe wine. On a serious note though, going for therapy is so valuable in this complicated, stressed, corona-infected world we live in. If you have actively been making it to your therapist’s couch/Zoom call and taking the courageous steps to have the sometimes uncomfortable conversations we salute you!
W – Waffles
Waffles. Wine. Not necessarily causes to celebrate, but definitely ways to celebrate!
Y – Yourself
Need we elaborate more? YOU, your whole self, the good and the bad, the exciting and the mundane, the beautiful and the ugly, and all the inbetweens.
Z – zest
Do you have a zest for life? Or have you zested a lemon lately? Either is worth celebrating!
Mel & Seemz