All I want for my birthday is for it to be given the same attention an agnostic would regard Christmas: respectfully aware of its implications to some (read: my mom’s body, my dad’s world), but zero obligation to deck the halls in revelry.
I rocketed out into my dad’s arms, naked and slimy, with a shriek for a greeting, bringing with me no decency or user manual.
So you see why it feels odd to be a wiling recipient of blessings on a day inaugurated by my ill-mannered entrance into the world.
Plus, my calendar is stuffed with some significant notables:
My parents clocked 30 years (three bloody decades!) living out my favorite love story: their marriage.
The day after, my best friend and her husband counted up three of their own.
My cousin Ana will have new name by Sunday.
And meanwhile, our mother-adjacent sister, Abby, is becoming a real one to this fresh-out-of-the-oven blob turning beautiful, baby boy.
It’s been a hub of hoorahs and on each of these days, I become blubbering mush.
I gush and squeal and trip over the reel of adoration that is playing out for and between the people I love. I consider each hallmark event above as a birth in its own right — something made, maintained and rebuilt from nothing.
That’s when I realized: By ignoring my own, I cheapen the joy of Life by treating it as a participatory trophy to merely survive it.
This year I want to taste it.