It’s my birthday tomorrow.
I’m not really one for getting depressed at getting a year older, but birthdays…such an anti-climax for me. I don’t remember when they started to be like that, but I do remember a pretty crappy 21st birthday.
I lived in the suburbs of Paris, in a damp, cold, shitty apartment with icicles in the shower above Madame Monjaret’s house (with “Spin” sprayed in graffitti on the wall downstairs). Her ailing grandfather lived with her in a hospital bed and had his own nurse, a friendly Algerian woman with a cross tattooed on her forehead. He used to moan at nights. And then one day he died. Although my room-mate and I couldn’t be sure, so we ended up not giving the sympathy card in case he was still alive..hmm, that would have been really awkward…
Anyway, I digress…
So 21st birthday is supposed to be a big one, even in England when pretty much anything is legal once you’ve turned 18, but 21 is still a marker from the not too distant past. I’d bought bus and ferry tickets for my boyfriend at the time to visit and then we would both go home for Christmas. Granted, the tickets were only 25 quid…good deal eh? But the point was, I’d bought them, and he had agreed to it before I bought them. Then he told me he wasn’t coming after all, and that it wasn’t working out (after my two months out of four in France). What a shit. So after that let down, I told my room-mate (literally my room-mate..our place was tiny) and my other two friends who were on the same university programme, that I wanted to be alone on my birthday.
To be honest, I actually had a great day. I went down to the Louvre and sat people-watching at the big glass pyramid for a while. Looked around at the paintings, then just walked around in the coldness. I didn’t have to think about consciously trying to have fun or having others trying to make me have fun. My friends were a bit upset that I should want to be alone on my birthday, but as they weren’t great friends and one of them also shared my birthday, I’m sure they didn’t dwell on it for too long…
So then in the evening, I had to bow down and we all dressed up in 70’s gear and went out clubbing. How weird…not sure why the 70’s gear, but it was sort of fun anyway. Oh, apart from me…throwing up on the Champs Elysees…classy. And after that, it was pretty much a usual night. In the club until breakfast time, then in a cafe for coffee and croissants at 5, then the metro home at 6
Maybe it was then that I decided not to treat my birthday as anything special. Although the trouble is, I think I DO, in that I don’t..if that makes sense. To be honest, I would love an alone day tomorrow. That might sound mean. But just to go shopping alone, to wander around and do what I wanted. Not to worry about people worrying about getting me a cake, or making sure I was having fun and all of that stuff (although I’m not sure anybody is going to be worrying about that).
I’m sort of feeling sorry for myself today. Y didn’t even come home from work yesterday, and it’s been a crappy week with me and the children being ill. Once again I’ve been left to look after everything, and although the housework CAN wait, the floor had to be cleaned (I would have left it, but there was sticky aquarius on the floor attracting dust bunnies, hair, crumbs, etc. etc., and the laundry had to be washed, and we had to eat SOMETHING). We were supposed to go out for a meal tomorrow night, but it looks as if that should be postponed because I’m still feeling a bit dodgy. I’m pretty sure there is no gift or card from him, although to be fair, he bought me a coat (that I budgeted for) last month which was for my birthday! In not bothering about my birthday, I think that I am really. I tried to get all the housework done today to leave none for tomorrow. I think I should just relax and not get stressed out about whether I’m “having fun”, instead of actually having fun! And also worrying about whether other people are caring about whether I’m having a fun birthday! I think that’s why it would be easier to have a day on my own, but then I would feel bad about the children/Y wanting to do something together. I just wish I could have a guilt free day, but I suppose I gave that up when I had children. Ok, so I sound like a real mental case.
Happy “unbirthday” to me…?