Message Guy Tip #71: How to pick 90th birthday wishes...
Turning 90 is a major milestone birthday. Although it's tempting to go the "easy" route and choose a birthday message with the usual "happy birthday" sentiments, don't do it — your 90th birthday boy or girl won't appreciate it the way you expect.
With 90th birthday wishes, you should opt for a message that pays real tribute to this incredible milestone. In reality, how does this approach translate into an appropriate birthday greeting? It means...
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You have to know the 90th birthday boy or girl well. Specifically, you need to know how he or she looks at life. Why? Because, for even the average 90 year old, there's no standard way of looking at life. But to make your selection easier, men and women 90 and over generally fall into two camps: the "glass half-full" or "glass half-empty" crowd.
For some 90 year olds, the glass of life is half-empty, where every ache is cause for concern. Many see life as an endless parade of pain. It's no wonder, considering that the life expectancy for the average 90 year old is roughly four years or less. Plus, the quality of life for many people 90-plus is poor. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 80% have a disability and nearly 70% cannot run errands on their own (or have major difficulties walking and climbing stairs).
For other 90 year olds — the minority who do not have serious health issues — there's the contentment that comes with age and great genes. This group sees the glass of life half-full. Many upbeat articles have been written about people 90-plus who seem to have a real zest for life, like Doris Day (yes, she's 90) and former U.S. President George H. W. Bush.
Accordingly, the best message to pick depends on how your birthday boy or girl sees life.
For the "glass half-full" crowd, you can choose 90th birthday wishes that are inspirational, clever, funny, even cool. You can also select a sentimental or the basic "happy" message but, with these 90 year olds, you have an opportunity to send birthday greetings that reflect the personality of the birthday girl or boy, which will be highly appreciated by them. A good illustration of this group's mindset — and what a good 90th birthday message should include — is a list called 45 Life Lessons, written by a 90 year old. You can find it here.
For the "glass half-empty" crowd, stick to sentimental or so-called "happy" (generic) birthday wishes that celebrate the recipient of your message with the reverence and love he or she deserves. This means finding something that sincerely expresses your feelings for the birthday girl or boy, keeping in mind that you can only go so far with what you want to say. Let the respect and admiration you have for him or her be your guide when you pick a message.
There's a third option if the recipient of your 90th birthday message does not fall into the camps I mentioned above — choose one of the examples below that strikes the perfect balance between the reverence you feel and what you actually would like to express.
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Wishing you all the joy and peace you want out of life as you celebrate your 90th birthday.
May you have a 90th birthday that gives you even more reason to sip from the elixir of life.
Happy birthday to the most incredible, most inspirational, most captivating 90 year old I have ever known.
Hoping your 90th birthday, like your lifetime, is full of love from family and friends, unbridled joy, unforgettable moments and, ultimately, happy memories.
On your 90th birthday, may you only know the joy, peace and health that comes with a life well lived.
Happy birthday to someone who can teach a 20 year old how to be young.
Message Guy Pick
The 90th birthday wish below has a special place in my heart. Why? Because...
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This type of message has a poetic quality that delicately expresses the "may you live long" sentiment that we all have for someone who has reached the age of 90. ◄ Read less
May your 90th birthday be the first of many days that bring you invigorating dawns, long afternoons, exquisite sunsets and brilliant full moons!