My 32 1/2 birthday is coming up! It really is not cute at all when I do that, but when Arwen says she is not 2, but is 2 1/2 (when she isn’t lying saying she is 1 or 3), we giggle and think she is so funny. When I do it, it seems weird. Anyways, I am going somewhere with this. With my half birthday fast approaching on March 24th, I started thinking about my birthday and past birthdays.
Before I was taken away from my mom (wow that became a quick downer, it gets better…I hope), she and my grandma made every birthday feel so special. This is one memory of my mom I hold so closely. Through everything we went through, when my birthday came around she never disappointed. After I got taken away, around 14, for the most part it fizzled, but due to the circumstances. Even when she did something after I got taken away, each birthday there was this awful tradition that I would cry and not out of joy. I think it’s a mixture of things that did happen on my birthday and the expectations I had for my birthday and when it felt like a normal day, which obviously happens when you get older, I would cry (by the way, the crying stopped before I hit 30, so I have matured in my age). My birthday became this sad thing to see if I would cry or not, so no pressure for my husband AT ALL when we got married!
Now as an adult, an older adult, I have wonderful memories, because I have the most amazing people in my life, so the crying thing is better. But recently I have been thinking about a couple of times where I was so surprised that these memories have almost shaped me…well stuck with me, but helped me when I needed it.
When I was 16 I was in foster care and I was a cheerleader. Our first pep rally happened to fall on my 16th birthday. My mom had permission to come see me and in the style of my mom from when I was a kid she came in with 16 balloons. I loved it! Then as I was in the line sliding back and forth clapping and welcoming the school in for the pep rally with my fellow cheerleaders, one of my beautiful friends, who to this day has such a special place in my heart, organized 16 people to walk in one by one and hand me a carnation. The last carnation was given to me by my crush at the time and I was so thrown off by what was going on that I kept clapping and sliding the wrong way. In all honesty I don’t know how I made the team, I have no coordination to begin with, then add some sweet gesture in the mix, I’m gone! That day was so special to me. It meant so much that I meant so much to them that the act of just handing me a flower, before the Bachelor got popular, has stuck with me to this day and carnations are now my favorite flower. I ended up getting a migraine and lost my sight that day and some not so great things happened when I got home and I did cry sad tears, but overall, it was a great day and the good outweighs the bad in this memory.
Most recently was my 32nd birthday, if you didn’t realize that, you know since I started this post by announcing I will be 32 1/2 this month. I had been really busy leading up to my birthday that I didn’t honestly care about it, at all. We were having friends over for pasta the Saturday after my birthday to celebrate both my husband and I and I was looking forward to that. My husband told me to make sure I kept the morning of the 26th open so that he and Arwen could take me to lunch. He would have random things slip out and I figure we were going to Brunos for my birthday lunch, which I wanted to go to, but I played it off like I didn’t know. I had been feeling down that whole week, I felt old and for whatever reason unlovable, and I also felt like me, as me, wasn’t good enough for those around me. No one told me that, I just went ahead and put that smack dab on myself. Prior to the 26th I had asked my brother-in-law if he could help with something at church and he said he couldn’t because he had plans, I didn’t think any more of it. Chris then told me on the 26th we need to go and we parked in the parking structure and were headed to Brunos. I was still playing it off as if I didn’t know where we were going, but in the meantime I was sharing my feelings of feeling kind of unlovable to the people around me and Chris seemed distracted (obviously because he knew what was coming and it would pretty much make me realize how lame I was being). As we were walking I caught a glimpse of my brother-in-law and before I could even think “wait, I thought he was busy”, that is when it happened. I heard Britney Spears’ “Crazy” come over a loud speaker! If you read my blog, Glitter in the Ashes, I admitted how much I love Ms. Spears and true to form, when I hear her, I listen! All of a sudden my mother-in-law, brother-in-law, and a couple friends started dancing and then I realized I was not cleaver at all. I was totally set up by Chris to make me think we were going to Brunos when really we were going to my birthday Flash Mob being done by so many people I love. I was in complete shock and as I looked around I really had to hold back tears (obviously I wanted to see their moves!). I saw my friend, who shouldn’t have been dancing because she broke her foot, dancing, her husband do a flip, our wonderful dear friend filming it all, one of our friends hiding behind a tree looking creepy, true to his form for pictures, and one of my lovely friends, who I love so much, dressed like a cow. I was in utter shock (pun intended). After it was all done, I was informed that they had been working on this for months and my mother-in-law and one of my closest friends had planned this whole thing and got everyone together. Just the fact that people cared enough to think about me so much, to practice, and dance to Britney Spears, it almost broke me. I have tears in my eyes just thinking about that day and how loved I felt and how I still feel so loved by each of these friends.
I left that moment realizing I was a dummy and that my friends love me, even when I feel unlovable. This is such a random blog, but I couldn’t stop thinking today how loved I am (not to sound conceited), but to again thank my friends and family for thinking of me. Plus I had to do this in celebration of my 32 1/2 birthday 🙂
If you want to see the video, I have posted it here.