Hello, world! It’s my birthday!
After thirty-five largely mediocre and sometimes downright terrible birthdays, I have decided to take over the celebratory operations of my special Day. Mom did a good job when I was a young child, but she’s been kind of slacking in recent years. DH is a wonderful husband, but he’s very, very busy. And my own children are just a bit too small to handle the responsibility. So, Me, I’m going to give you a great day today!
I’m not sure when the birthday downhill slide began. It might have been in 1981, when Ronald Regan was shot on what was supposed to be my day of fame and glory. Can I just tell you how hard it is to enjoy your tenth birthday party with news coverage of the president’s attempted assassination going on in the background?
Since then, my birthday has always seemed like a magnet for bad things. As I got older, I have vague memories of things which are mostly blocked from my mind now. You know, yucky stuff like car accidents, thefts, small fires, a large fire (in which I almost died, but that’s another story), breakups, disease, plague, famine, world annihilat– oh, wait. I’m mixing my birthday up with The Apocalypse. *shrug* I used to wonder if they were one and the same.
For a time, my birthday was so unlucky and unhappy that I quit celebrating it altogether. I celebrated my half-birthday (September 30) instead, thinking that, if I could just be half as unlucky on that day as I had been on my regular birthday, things would be looking up. It actually worked. I did that for about three years running in an attempt to evade the Birthday Curse.
And then, in February of 1998, I met my sweet DH. He was a very lucky thing to have happen on my birthday, except I broke up with him before my birthday came around (or so he says), so that was not such a great year. But then we got back together, and Birthday 1999 was fab. We went to Italy together in late March. Who could complain about celebrating one’s birthday in Italia? And Birthday 2000 was equally nice. No unlucky stuff happened, at least, not to me or anyone I knew.
The birthday curse seemed to have been lifted. Turning 30 in 2001 held great promise. I bought a house in January of that year, and was thrilled at the prospect of celebrating the first year of my third decade in my very own place. Instead, I celebrated it at a funeral home, during the calling hours of my beloved maternal grandfather. His was not an untimely death, having lived well into his eighties, but still. There sure was a cloud over the (very quiet) birthday celebration later.
2002 continued the Grim Reaper trend when the Queen Mother passed away on my birthday. We weren’t especially close, but the constant television coverage made me feel like I was competing for attention with her funeral arrangements, and it was rather depressing.
2003 was a non-event birthday. Nothing good, nothing bad. I suppose, in light of past events, I should put that in the “good” column.
2004 was kind of a strange year. I was eight months pregnant with DD1, and rather uncomfortable. Plus, she was breech, so I believe I spent most of that day upside-down on a slanted ironing board in an attempt to flip her over. (It did not work. But she did get flipped later, and was born vaginally, so it’s all good.)
2005 was a blur, since I was chasing my almost-one-year-old around. It must not have been too bad, though, because we found out a month later that we were expecting DD2.
Last year was quiet- at least, as quiet as it can get with an infant and a toddler. My mom was in town and we took the girls for pictures, which was nice. But I seem to think there was no cake. How can you have a proper birthday without cake?
Thus, I have decided to take on the responsibility of organizing my very own birthday celebration. I am going to bake myself a lovely chocolate cake, which I might or might not share with the family. I am going to make my favorite lunch, which is a tomato sandwich on toast with a very fine smear of mayonnaise. I am going to take a shower. I am going to take the girls outside and show them how to draw “Happy Birthday To Mom” on the driveway with chalk. Later on, I am going to a drum circle, which I last attended while pregnant with DD2 (who, by the way, has a fascination with rhythm- can you believe it?!) And then, DH and I will get the kids to sleep at a reasonable hour so I can have some birthday lovin’, after which I am going to fall blissfully asleep, knowing the next thirty-five years have started off properly.
It just goes to show: if you want something done right, you often have to step up and do it yourself. Happy Birthday, Me!