It’s My Party And I’ll Write If I Want To
I have a weird relationship with my birthday.
One of my biggest nightmares is spending it at Chili’s or some place like that anxiously anticipating the inevitable. I know it’s coming, and then when I least expect it, I hear the off-beat clapping. I’m sitting there frozen in terror as the wait staff walks out in unison carrying a lukewarm microwaved cake soaked in vanilla milk while half-heartedly remixing Happy Birthday. The rest of the patrons are staring, waiting for me blow out the measly candle before the wax melts down into the melted ice cream. The waiter slams down 10 spoons for a two person dessert and leaves.
As you can probably tell, I’m not super comfortable with the extra attention. This is coming from someone who embraces being on stage. Sure, I enjoy receiving praise, but only when I feel like I’ve earned it. This year, I think I have.
In keeping with tradition, I’ll spend the night before my birthday (which is right now) reflecting. The feelings are bittersweet and nostalgic because it’s the end of something familiar and the beginning of something new and uncertain. With New Years being just a few weeks away, that’s a whole lot of “new” in a short period of time. Sometimes “new” is scary. Now when people ask me how old I am, I have to learn a whole new number, and just when I got used to the last number.
This year I’m doing things a bit differently. I probably won’t be out wearing a tiara and sash sloppily notifying the entire bar that it’s my birthday, but that all depends on how much I drink. However, I will be approaching this year with a newfound enthusiasm for this unofficial national holiday. Here is to continued growth and success in each aspect of my life that I hold dear.
In the hours to follow, I will probably receive calls, texts, and well wishes from family and friends. Some of whom I interact with only twice a year, probably exchanging birthday wishes back in forth. But each person is a reminder of a special moment in time. I’m extremely grateful for each of those moments regardless of how insignificant they seem in retrospect. Time passed won’t ever diminish those memorable times.
Whether it’s from near or far, thank you for being a friend.