Looking back on birthdays. Looking ahead to birthdays.
I’m thinking today that I am thirty-eight. If this is the half-way point in my life, that means I will live to be 76. I want to live longer than that. Because if I die at 76, that means Diva will only be 46. I don’t want her to be motherless at 46. Hell, I don’t want to be motherless at 46. I want my boys to have their mommy even when they are growing hair out of their ears and bald. I want to be their mom forever.
I’m not sure how I’m feeling about this age. I am writing this on my last day of 37, which also happens to be a Friday the 13th, which also happens to be the time that I’ve just returned from the mall with nothing to wear. I am more depressed about my weight than my age right now. I need to get control of that. I know how to. And I will. Soon.
Anyway, in recalling significant birthdays, I thought I’d try to remember some of them.
I’m Three or Four
The very absolute first one I do remember is either my third or my fourth, and maybe my mom remembers. My sister and I both share April birthdays (as does my other brother) but my sister and I are the same age for two weeks each year. Irish twins. So, I’m guessing we had a lot of shared birthday parties. This one, where I was either three or four, probably four, cuz who can remember things at the age of three? I don’t think there were theme birthdays back then, but I do clearly recall my parents had a horse at our house for the party. I think it was a big horse, not just a puny little pony, and I guess the horse was there to give rides. My aunt was dressed as a Princess too, I think, and my grandmother was dressed up too, I think in like a white wedding dress (we were a strange family), and I’m pretty sure my grandmother had a leash around a white duck’s neck and was walking it around the yard.
So, I walk over to the horse, probably to pet it, or feed it a carrot, and the horse steps on my foot. My bare foot. My bare it’s-my-birthday-and-I’ll-do-what-I-want bare foot. And it hurt. I remember it hurt, and I cried and I ran into the house into my bedroom and cried and cried cuz my birthday was ruined. I don’t think I came out of my room after that. I probably fell asleep. My adult family members probably got drunk.
Eleven. Or Twelve?
I think I should remember other significant ones. Let’s see, I do remember the birthday when I was in fifth or sixth grade because we had just moved and I got a Bananas magazine subscription and I got to choose where to eat for dinner. One of these years, I know I chose Arthur Treachure’s Fish and Chips. Another birthday, I chose a pizza place, and as I’m writing this, I do think the name of the pizza place was called Thick and Thin Pizza. Seriously. How am I remembering these things.
My parents tried to throw me a little surprise birthday party. I knew about it though, and it was at a pizza place too. I have a pizza thing, I guess! And I remember a couple of my gifts from a friend. Fuzzy dice, red and black. And the Animotion tape, with the song Obsession on it. No boyfriend, and doesn't every sweet-sixteen-year-old want a boyfriend to practice kissing on her birthday? Never had that.
Significant because I think my father came home from work and I was walking around, prancing in front of him, trying to get him to say Happy Birthday to me. He didn’t. He forgot it was my birthday! I also think I got a pair of white tennis shoes on this birthday. Had no boyfriend then. Hardly ever did for birthdays, or Valentine’s or Proms or Homecomings. But, that’s another post for another day. This is sad, but I am positive that my restaurant of choice this year was Long John Silvers.
I remember very much. I was a freshman in college, and my roommate (Hi Sue!) got me a cookie cake, and a bottle of amaretto. I think that was the drink of choice if we were splurging back then! My goal that night was to do 19 shots, and / or beers. I am pretty sure I still have it written down as to how many I drank that night, and I think I only got somewhere around 9 – 11 before I called it a night. Oh, and hello, I did have a boyfriend that year, kind of. Dan C., who I met a few weeks prior in Daytona who also went to the same college. He gave me a card. I probably gave him something. I still have that card. He's bald now, and I think divorced.
Whoa. This one was a surreal one. I think I have something written about it somewhere and will have to look it up. Let’s just say it involved a boyfriend, who wasn’t really a boyfriend, more of a jerk, no presents, no card. Some erotica. Fishnet stockings. Probably a little bit of pot. And champagne. Yes, I should definitely look through my old journals for a recap of this one.
This one I remember. And usually, you shouldn’t remember your 21st, right, because it should have been so crazy-nutty that you can't remember all the shots you did, and all the dances you danced, and all the guys you made out with. Right? Well, it was the first year Hubby and I were dating, we were into it for just barely 2½ months. He gave me a Swatch Watch that we went to pick out together, ensuring I would get something I wanted. I might have gotten flowers, but probably not. We went to dinner with my parents that night, and then went to a lame-lame-lame bar that was lame. My friends were there, which was not the lame part. The bar was just stupid, and then-boyfriend-now-hubby was in the middle of spring training for football, so the wimp was tired, and it was just a lame night. I remember a Madonna song. That's about it. No hangover on your 21st, that’s what I call lame. Also lame was the fact that it was Easter weekend so we were at home for my birthday, and not at school, which would have been much more fun.
I remember this one too because my dad got me a hotel room downtown Chicago so then-boyfriend-now-hubby and I went to shack up for the night in the city. It was going to be fun! We were going to get crazy wild! We were going to get drunk! I had a new outfit and everything. We get to the hotel, probably had S#x because, well, just because we were at a hotel, I guess. Then we went for Giordano’s pizza cuz that’s the kind of pizza you have to eat in Chicago. Then we went back to the hotel to get ready in my brand-new outfit and everything. I get ready, am all dolled up. Guess what? Not only do I bring TWO.FREAKING.DIFFERENT.BLACK.SHOES… I also bring two RIGHT shoes, not even two different left and right.
So, the night wasn’t exactly ruined, but I ended up not wearing my cute outfit. I put back on my jeans and my white Genera sweatshirt and we went to Hang-Ups. My presents: A friend (Peggy!) made us a cute gift basket with wine and snacks to take to our hotel. Then-boyfriend-now-hubby got me a little chocolate bear, a bracelet, and OMG, I just remembered… A SEX TOY!
Twenty-four was the year I got married a month after my birthday. I don’t think we had anything spectacular planned since it was almost get-married time.
I’m pretty sure 26 was one of the most fun birthdays, with a bunch of friends at an Italian restaurant, Basta Pasta, and then a trip downtown Chicago back to that same Hang-Ups bar.
Twenty-eight. I was pregnant with Ajers. We went out to dinner with our friends we met on our honeymoon. Do not recall presents.
Twenty-nine. I had a six-month-old. Restaurant of choice was TGIFridays. Some old man wanted to hold Ajers cuz he was cute. I remember being flattered. I remember hubby being possessive over a stranger wanting to hold our son. I also remember that I had the Cajun Chicken Salad, with extra dressing. It was my favorite, and I ordered it all the time at Fridays. It is, sadly, no longer on the menu. I am sure I got a “I Love You Mommy” frame for this birthday.
Thirty. This was a good one, yet uneventful in the ways a 30th birthday should be. I was 8½ months pregnant with Diva. We had seen Stomp the weekend before, and the baby was kicking like crazy to the beat of all the stuff the Stomp team played. The night of my birthday was another trip to Fridays. And yeah, I probably got that same damn salad, and … oops, I was gonna say an Ultimate Mud Slide but I was pregnant, so I probably didn’t. Hubby got me some placemats (why? Maybe I asked for them), and a cool platter that I actually still have and love. I received FOUR gifts of flowers for my 30th. One from hubby cuz my mom told him to order some for me. One from a Chicago pal (we were then living in Philly), one bouquet from my new Philly friends, and a bouquet from my sister-in-law’s parents. I also got a lot of cards. The day after I turned 30, we took Ajers to the hospital for a scheduled tonsillectomy. Usually, kids don’t stay overnight anymore, but he had an oxygen problem afterward; they put him in a plastic tent. He was only 18 months. I was so pregnant, and so sad seeing my little baby all sick and hurting. I slept in the hospital on the crappiest chair-bed thing, 8½ months pregnant, worried about my little baby. It sucked.
Thirty-two. I was pregnant again. Tukey. Oh, and I think I was sick with a cold. But I also think we went out to an Italian restaurant for dinner.
Thirty-six. You can read about it here: OK, never mind. I didn’t blog about my thirty-sixth birthday so obviously it musta sucked.
Thirty-seven. You can read about it here: And I didn’t blog about my thirty-seventh birthday either, but this is what I remember. And obviously, sensing a pattern about birthday-blogging, and them sucking.
Flowers from hubby. It was on a Friday, and the place by our house has $1 Roses on Fridays. He may have even splurged for a dozen-and-a-half. They were red. I probably got a B&N gift card and a Starbucks card, which is what I want every year. He was tired, didn’t feel like going out. We went to a PIZZA place. Sensing a theme here, huh? I drank a very good margarita, for it being a pizza place. Then the following night we went out to dinner with friends, and then to the bar. I had a cute outfit on, which, sad to say, and one of the reasons, I may be in a bit of a funk this year, it no longer fits.
Two days prior to Thirty-eight, yesterday:
OK, if you’ve gotten this far, it’s safe to admit to you that I had a mini-nervous breakdown last night, and another one two nights before that. The kind where you feel like you’re 13 again, and your hair won’t go the right way, or you’ve totally screwed up your makeup, even though I don’t think I was wearing much makeup when I was 13. But where you cry for no significant reason, just because you feel like being sad. And angry. And confused. And bitchy. And the kids couldn’t put their cereal bowls in the sink, and the laundry is still piling up and even thought you got a wax and a nice massage in preparation of turning thirty-eight, it didn’t do much to lift your spirits and you’re just in a sucky mood.
That was me. And I know it’s a bitch-way for me to behave. I am healthy. I have beautiful kids. A husband, for some reason or another, who totally adores me and tells me he loves me all the time. A beautiful house, great family, terrific friends. So, to me, I say: Manic! Stop yer bitching, and just be thankful for once in your freaking life.
OK, I am. And this post is blah, and I don’t even think I should post it, but if I’m going to be true to myself, then I’m putting it all out there. This is me. This is me eight hours before I turn thirty-eight.
Ain’t it beautiful?
And, a couple of days ago, I was thinking of a birthday haiku, and here’s what I came up with:
Happy Birthday Me
Thirty-Eight And Feeling Great
Two More Till Forty
But I don’t think that’s properly reflecting my pre-birthday feelings, so how’s about I come up with another more realistic one:
But Healthy Still, None-the-Less
Try to lose some weight!
Or how about this one:
Can’t Get Drunk Tonight
Then What About Tomorrow?
No Head in Toilet.
Just me and Hubby
Twenty-four hours alone
How to spend the time?
And Alaskan King Crab Legs
That’s a birthday meal!
Don’t want or need cake
Just want some hugs and kisses
Or maybe a book?
Smiles, Laughter, and Love
All this I do want and more
You truly know me