Treatise on the Freedom to Believe Your Birthday Sucks

Good times.

My birthday was yesterday and it sucked. In fact, many more of my birthdays have sucked than not sucked. I honestly think it is just timing or an unpleasant recurring cosmic joke. If you’re feeling sad about that, please don’t be. The day after is always so much better. That’s not to say I haven’t had wonderful birthdays, because I have. The original one was probably the best one even though I can’t remember it. There’s not a gift much cooler than life.

The thing that’s hard about declaring for the world that your birthday sucks is everyone wants you to have an amazing birthday. Hell, I wish people “amazing” birthdays too. I give people the freedom to enjoy my birthday if they want. They can have at it. I am the first person in line to get pumped about other people’s birthdays. It feels so nice to celebrate the day that someone joined humanity on this rock we call home.

It really is that day when family, friends, and strangers alike want you to feel special. Or at least they recognize of all the days of the year, the day you were born is as fine a day as any to let you go to the front of the line, or buy your coffee, or give you a free lip gloss. The local plastic surgery center even emailed me a $50 gift card. It is my birthday after all.

Some people dislike their birthday because they don’t like to call attention to getting older. That’s not what gets my panties in a bunch at all. I actually like noticing the passage of time. I work hard to be mindful in the moment and savor every ticking tock. I accept my age with only a raised eyebrow about wrinkles now and again. This one by my lip was particularly enthusiastic in the mirror this morning, but bring it. Every wrinkle has a place in my story.

And every experience has a place in my story, including the many sucky ones that coincidentally happened around my birthday. Honoring my authentic emotions around that is the gift I give myself every year. The most recent edition is being a thousand miles away from my people and a party I was going to enjoy, like top-10 moments-in-life enjoy, but plans change.

Some priorities are non-negotiable. Some life shifts require the deepest compassion. Supporting those we love without hesitation is itself a powerful declaration of love. The only place I would be was exactly where I chose: not at that party. I leave room for all the emotions that accompany every choice.

Add that experience as a candle on my cake that stokes the roaring fire enough to burn my birthday to the ground. I can still love my life and appreciate the outpouring of sweetness and wishes from all of the awesome ones who surround me. In fact, those messages, calls, and texts age for me as a fine wine the farther beyond my birthday I get. And trust me, I’ll drink every drop starting today.

Love, gratitude, and a thoughtful bow to those who have reached out to celebrate. I’m down for that as long as it isn’t on my birthday. I declare the freedom to call to order a party outside of the sphere of influence of that sucky day. Your acceptance of my rejection of having to celebrate on my birthday is the most thoughtful gift and just what I wanted. Now let’s party some other time soon.

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