12 April 2011
Actually, if I'm really being honest about it, my birthday yesterday was, well... blah. It's been one of those years where everyone's been terribly busy and under pressure and it seemed to happen for everyone all at once. Gifts were in the mail, or I had to shop for them myself, to be reimbursed at a later date. Big owlet was prepared, with a lovely card she made for me last week and I spoke to my family and my oldest friend on the phone. There were 30-ish beautiful messages on Facebook too... which are very lovely and all, but they just seem a bit, well, removed from reality? Like everyone is at arms length. I suppose that's what happens when you spend time socialising online. I've been very lucky to become real life friends with so many people I've met online and have built community around me with them, but when everyone's busy and assumes I am too because they've just seen my latest status update, a couple of lines on facebook will suffice. I've done it too. Lots of times.
In the afternoon, after I watched the postie drive by, Huz took time away from work so we could go out for a special meal that I didn't have to cook and, because it was Monday, many of the new places we wanted to try were closed. Or the ones that were open didn't have anything the owlets would eat beside toast. And so after an hour and a half of looking for something suitable, we dragged the extremely hungry whinging owlets into a cafe we knew where they ate toast and our meal was, well... blah. The rest of the afternoon was spent with Huz driving around and waiting in the car or doing blocks while I ran in and out of shops for a few owlet-free moments to buy myself a new, urgently needed, practical mama bag. To no avail because everything I saw was too expensive or impractical or, well... blah. Then on the way home, Huz was feeling desperate to relieve the day's blahness. We stopped at the local shop so he could pick up a birthday cake, but they were all, well... blah. So he bought some tiny strawberry tarts instead. Then in his rush to present them before owlet bedtime, he shoved the candle in one, wrong side up and (rather amazingly), lit the holder instead of the wick. The flame blew out before it got to me. So we tried another candle. In hindsight, it's hilarious. But at the time, it felt like the Lamest. Birthday. Ever.
Now the point of this post was not to host my own pity party. Really, I know how lucky I am to have spent the day with my lovely family. I know everyone tried and it's a busy time of year. And birthdays are probably overrated. We should be telling the people we love that we love them all the time... But I did learn a few things yesterday.
1. Don't rely on social media for personal interactions. Work on real life friendships more.
2. Take time to send cards and gifts to people I know and love and make sure they are on time. Just in case everyone else is busy too.
3. Try harder to make things by hand, or choose gifts that are from the heart.
4. Don't rely on others to make the day special, but put just as much effort into showing myself some love and respect.
So, in that spirit, I'm making today a do-over of yesterday. April 12th will not exist in this house for this year. I'm looking out for the postie while tidying up, lighting the first fire of the year and cooking myself a delicious birthday dinner. With cake. And we will celebrate in style, dammit! I may even buy myself a gift. Or make one. And wrap it up, just because.