Thursday, March 5, 2009

Forty-seven Going on Twelve

Aren’t I cute? That was taken on my sixth birthday when it was exciting to be another year older. As a suburban child with a Cleaveresque mom we of course had birthday parties. They weren’t lavish pony, clown, and magician affairs, but rowdy backyard parties. Mom thought them out, we always had interesting games to play, I can’t’ remember if we had projects and crafts (like at my boys’ parties). Of course we had cake. Duncan Hines. My favorite birthday cake is German Chocolate. I haven’t had one in years because my favorite favorite birthday dessert is pie. Peach pie.

The bigger digits started freaking me out when I turned 35. (If you thought last weeks crisis was ridiculous, you should have seen me at 35!) In some ways I welcome my birthday. It’s a chance to get to do what I want to do. Plus people give you presents. And they sing to you. This is a fine thing as long as it isn’t in a restaurant amongst strangers.

One of my most amusing memories is the boys’ grandpa Francis 90th birthday celebration. We were at the Olive Garden and the waiter overheard us talking about this auspicious occasion. So what does he do but gather together the wait staff and imprison us at our table singing that highly copyrighted song. I looked over at Francis and he was mortified; The Beav who was all of three years wanted to crawl under the table as did the rest of us. Seven year old Wally looks at Ward and me, daggers in his eyes: “If you ever do this to me, I’ll hurt you.” “No prob son. I don’t like drawing attention to myself.”

That‘s me at 20 and I loved drawing attention to myself. My excuse on my birthday was I couldn’t help myself, after all I was drunk and Adam Ant was playing on the jukebox; that table was begging me to dance on it. Besides, it was my birthday. This is the only reason I wasn’t asked to leave the bar-without-the-cabaret-license. And I was hot.

Speaking of drunken birthday celebrations: When I turned 41, I spent my birthday on this beach . (picture from The whole nude thing necessitated the copious amounts of alcohol I consumed that day. But what a hoot! All the people with the pretty bodies were covered up and all the not so pretty bodies, nude. Isn’t that the way it goes? My friend had this awesome beer opener, ever time you popped a top a voice jovially encouraged you: “Oh yeah! Time for a beer!”

Another memorable birthday was my eighteenth. I had this massive thing for Johnny Mathis (image: and he was on tour that spring. My boyfriend at the time was so smitten with me he actually took me to a Johnny Mathis concert! What a great evening. What a dear man. I’ve been looking for this guy for years just so I could tell him his gift became the litmus test for how much you really love me.

I love being the princess…but... sometimes it doesn't always work out that way. I met the boy who handed me my first broken heart, on my sixteenth birthday. My mother threw a party for me and he came with his sister. Funny, as I was looking through pictures for blog images, I found his. I also found the picture of the girl he left me for,too. I had a WTF moment and then without thinking shredded them. It felt great. A good birthday gift to myself.

I made resolutions (which I am happy to say I’m keeping!) this January so I have formulated three goals to reach by next March:
1. Weight what I did in 1993
2. Certified in my nursing specialty
3. Ready to pitch the novel to an agent

Looks like a busy year for me! I’m slated to have a happy happy birthday this weekend. I‘m not sure what The Girl has planned but I know it will be fun! Assuredly it won’t be Maui, or a massive party in the back yard with balloons and pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, and thankfully not a drunken night in a bar. It will be filled with laughter and people I adore.


Phyl said...

I just caught up on your last few posts -- existential crisis on forward. (I'm so terribly behind.)

And I realized that I haven't recently told you how I love your blog to death, and how smart and funny and insightful and wise you really are. I just felt my heart swelling as I was reading. You are wonderful!

And why didn't I know you were writing a novel???

laurel said...

Happy birthday!! Love the recap of birthday's past.