Birthdays. Take ’em or leave ’em there’s a hell of a lot of pressure surrounding them. Have we missed the point of birthdays completely? And do we really want to celebrate the passing of yet another year?
So, this weekend I turned another year older.
Which, according to Beaver makes me 68. Possibly 69. I had no idea I was faring so well. Must be all those facials. Crikey, can you imagine how old I’d look without them?
The day itself falls on Summer Solstice. The longest day. 16 hours and 38 minutes of daylight to be precise. Say no more.
There is always a lot of pressure on birthdays. To get it right. Especially when the birthday girl is an indecisive (volatile) Gemini. Even more so when she’s a heavily pregnant, indecisive (volatile) Gemini.
No one wants to cross her.
Hot air balloons and stinky fish.
The past birthdays that Daddy Pig has tried and failed at vary from unwanted hot air balloon rides to trying to book The Fat Duck on the actual birthday morning to gutting a fish at 10.00 PM at night for a birthday meal that had got rather waylaid.
Most years I’ve ended up feeling a bit dissatisfied. Like it was all a bit of an anticlimax. I’m not the only one who feels like this apparently. Other friends say they feel the same. That they’re a bit over this birthday lark.
As they’re forced to acknowledge another year that’s passed by, even quicker than the last.
Missing the point?
In previous years, Daddy Pig has always bore the brunt of this. Naturally.
But in truth, it’s not his fault. Yes, he’s an idiot but mostly he’s a kind idiot. He just doesn’t know how to please an indecisive (volatile) Gemini. Which is no surprise really when the Gemini in question doesn’t always know how to please herself either.
And it is only this year, when I planned my own birthday from start to finish (and had no one else to blame ha ha) that I realise I’ve been missing the whole point. Of birthdays. That it isn’t the superficial details of presents or plans that matter. Whether you have enough carrot sticks or baguettes. Or that surprise bag/necklace/top that you really, really wanted.
That you think proves how much you’re loved.
Kids, friends and family.
No. It’s so much simpler than that.
Like hanging out with your crazy two and four year old kids, who don’t give two hoots that it’s your birthday and only want to know that theirs is next. Or having your own parents make a huge effort to be with you when they have their own plates full enough right now. And friends on hand at short notice to share a glass of fizz with. Friends who will peel a few more carrots if you really haven’t got enough.
I’m going to try and remember this next year. When the build up starts, the pressure begins and the fear of getting older sets in. When I feel like I should celebrate or I start (unrealistically) hoping that Daddy Pig will read my mind and anticipate that bag/necklace/top I want. That shows how much he loves me.
Because it’s not about the plans. Or the presents.
Unless, of course you’re Prince William (who incidentally shares my birthday) and you get an £8 million helicopter.
In which case, I take it back.
It’s ALL about the gifts.
How do you greet your birthday? With glee or are you glad to get it over? Leave a comment below or join us on Surviving Life and Motherhood for a slice of birthday cake. Because no one said birthdays can’t be about cake…