For my birthday Cody and I spent the night at a swanky hotel where we didn’t have to worry about stepping on Legos on our way to the bathroom or shiny trails of baby snot being slimed down our pants.

We had a grownup dinner in a grownup restaurant, we even sat in the bar because that’s where grownups sit even if they only order water with a lemon and Coke. We ate grownup food at our own pace and we didn’t have to cut anyone else’s food into manageable pieces or worry about smashed peas being spit launched into our faces. We stayed up late, went to bed when we wanted to and woke up when we were both ready. No one came into the bathroom while I was showering demanding a snack and I spent 19 hours not having to deal with anyone’s crap, literally.

All in all, it was a wonderful night.

We went out to breakfast where we both ate embarrassing amounts of delicious food that we didn’t have to share and when we came home? We launched right back into real life, which included lots of balloons and a little less snot.

We talked about grownup things. About how 6 years ago today we first came to Indianapolis from Pittsburgh to look at law schools. About how 8 years ago today I found out I was pregnant with Addie. About how we’ve lived in Indiana for half of our married life and how we can’t believe we’ve been here for so long. I honestly couldn’t tell you if it was cold or not today because I spent so much of it next to Cody who puts out a warmth that calms me to my core. My favorite place in the world is right next to him.

Being this in love with someone is both exhilarating and dangerous, I am wholly confident in who I am because of him but at the same time the thought of ever having to be without him causes an ache deep within my chest. He’s loved me since I was 18, through my 20’s and right into 30. I’ve spent so much of my life hating myself. Hating my big nose, hating my thighs, knees and hips, I’ve hated my brain for not working right and I’ve hated myself for not doing more, whatever more is.

This morning I looked and the mirror and realized this body has been with me for 30 years. It’s gained and lost weight, carried two healthy babies and has hugged the people I love through really horrible times. It as danced for me, cooked for me, wrapped itself around my husband and loved him from the moment he became mine.

I came to peace with it.

I apologized for hating it so much and told it that it was doing a pretty bangin’ job of doing what a body is supposed to do.

I read a book once that said women’s’ bodies are like sand dunes. That they are supposed to curve and bend and that over the years they become more and more sculpted by life thus making every dip and arch more beautiful.

As I stared at myself in the mirror today I was finally able to admit out loud I am lovely, and that I have Cody to thank for taking such good care of me through everything.

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” -Lao Tzu


  1. I’m so glad you had such a lovely time. You deserve it woman. Try to do it more often. 🙂

  2. Love this-congrats!

  3. You are so very, very LOVELY!! I heart you!

  4. This?


    Happy birthday, Casey.

  5. This post makes my heart happy. My husband and I are coming up on our one year anniversary but he’s been by my side for almost 20 years. With him I am the best me.

  6. Happy Birthday! Sounds like you’ve given yourself a pretty great gift…and that Cody is the one who helped make it possible. So beautiful

  7. Casey you make me feel less alone.

  8. Glad you enjoyed a nice birthday! You deserve a little R&R!

  9. How lovely! I am coming to terms with my changing body as well. It’s doing what it’s supposed to and for that I am loving it. Really a mountain to climb for me to say that- I think you relate?

  10. Heart in a puddle.

  11. Oh this is beautiful. Happy Birthday. xo

  12. I am so glad that you had a wonderful birthday with your hunny. You deserve it in more ways than one!

  13. This is seriously the sweetest thing I have ever read. I have to say it definitely brought a tear to my eye. It rings so true. Thank-you for being so honest, you never know who’s day you make a little bit brighter by doing so 🙂 It sure made mine. Thanks 🙂

  14. Sigh. When I read your writing about “I’ve spent so much of my life hating myself. Hating my big nose, hating my thighs, knees and hips, I’ve hated my brain for not working right and I’ve hated myself for not doing more, whatever more is.”- it’s like you’re taking the words right out of my brain and sticking em onto your blog. At the same time, I realize how totally effed up it is for either of us to think this way, because when I look at you? I see a TOTALLY gorgeous (seriously, stunning) lady who has an amazing family and has done such a good job at keeping it all together despite the **** you’ve been through. So, I’m glad that Cody has seen all this in you, and even more glad that you’re finally starting to see it yourself, because you absolutely deserve to (and should!) love yourself. <3

  15. This is beautiful! Happy birthday to you.

    Indiana is a great place to live! 😉

  16. This is so good and lovely. Like you!!!

  17. Oh, so stunning, Casey! I am so happy you saw yourself the way others see you. Happy 30th Birthday!

  18. Ohh Betsy! says:

    I’ve said it before but it really is so inspiring how you guys made it through your rough times. You worried me for a while there in law school but I have to say, you guys are a real success and it’s so obvious how in love you two are.

  19. this makes me unbelievably happy.

  20. Happiness for many more to come, friend. K

  21. Your birthday sounds magical. As does your life. I long and hope for that same beauty in mine. You are my hero, I hope you know that. I am so sorry that depression has me in it’s grips and that I didn’t get to enjoy our time more. I hope that you can shake off any of the ugly this year and just laugh, hard, and enjoy all that you have in life. Love you Casey, to Pluto and back…that is even farther than the moon. xoxo

  22. It was in my 30s, too, when I was finally able to look in the mirror and actually like what I see.

    Sounds like a perfect birthday!! xoxo

  23. so beautiful…thanks for sharing!

  24. I KNEW there was a reason that I have neither strength nor courage! Lmao, and I’m 43! I’m glad you have both! It sounds like it was a wonderful time.

  25. I LOVE this post. The same thing has happened to me. My man has loved me so well and honestly that I have no choice but to love myself. I’m truly a better person for his love.
    Your words are so lovely!

  26. Reading this on a day, in a week, where my heart aches, and my soul is tired and I long to love like this. It made me smile for you that you have this.

    And maybe I will someday.

  27. I think its both amazing how much you love Cody and how you’ve come to accept your body. Two huge things to be so happy and thankful for. I just don’t know if I could ever quite feel as peaceful. I am constantly questing for more. Always.

  28. Jachel says:

    You’re amazing. Happy birthday. And you’re incredibly inspiring. I’ve Been working on this very thing. So having you write this spoke to my heart. Thank you so much.