I am 53 years old today, well, I will be at 8:02 PM tonight. My mother and father are no longer alive, not that today would be different, or special if they were. The last real birthday party I had was when I was ten years old. Oh, what a party that was, friends and cake, balloons and presents! I’ll never forget that birthday party. That was the year Dad got me the blue Schwinn 3 speed bike I wanted so badly. It was the last time in my life I was made to feel as if my being here meant something.
Now, my birthdays go by like any ordinary day. I get no cards, no gifts, no cake…no celebration of my being born. I will get the obligatory “Happy Birthdays” on Facebook, and I know that some of those are sincere, but they aren’t from anyone who is in my real life, just cyber life. I will spend today alone. Husband is on the road, but even if he was home, he has never made my birthdays special. He would might grab the last-minute card, maybe a cake, but he has never made it feel important. He even forgot my 50th, the one I thought would be special somehow.
My children and I are still not close, not the way I, and they, wish we were. It’s not just distance that keeps us apart, but so many emotional hurts, and a past I can’t make up to them, no matter how much I wish I could. I can’t be the mother they wish they had, just like my mother can never be the parent I wish she had been. I have to admit that I am the worst when it comes to sending cards, whether it’s birthday, or Christmas cards, I have never been good at it, even when I could afford to. But I never get cards, no Mother’s Day cards, no Christmas Cards, and no gifts. I got one Christmas card last week from a dear lady and her husband in Florida, a woman I only know from Facebook. She has been a blessing to me more times than I can count. I thank God for her kindness toward me. I hung that card up on my bedroom wall above my little Christmas tree. It makes me smile.
I still dream of having a bunch of girl friends, the type of friends who have lunches together, and hang out and laugh together, friends who would celebrate with me. But, I’ve never had that either. Which is funny because I’ve always been told I’m so friendly and loving. I guess those kinds of friendships are hard to develop when you spend years drifting from place to place, just trying to survive, when you have no roots. I long so desperately for that kind of connection to other women. Being alone all the time sucks.
In the morning, when I wake up, I will pretend it’s just another day. There will be no one here to celebrate me, no one to say, “I’m glad you were born.” No hugs, no cake, no laughter, no anything. I am ready. I won’t look at all the “Happy Birthdays” on Facebook, at least not tomorrow. I will wait for my kids to call, but know in my heart that if they do, it’s just because they feel they should. I know I don’t deserve much from them, but knowing someday that I am truly loved by them is the only gift I want. I know they’ll have another reason for hating me after reading this too. All I can say is that I gave them life, not the life they wish I could have given them, but life just the same. And today is the day my mother gave me life, and all life is important, and all mother’s should be made to feel special, even the ones who fall short. I never had anyone to show me how to be a good parent, so maybe that’s why I’ve never been one. I’m tired of hiding my hurt.
I know, I’m rambling. Sitting here pouring out a thousand thoughts a second, feeling sorry for myself. But hey, I care about me, even if no one else does. It took a lot of years for me to say that I love myself, and forgive myself for all I’ve messed up. I will celebrate this life that God has given me, and try to be happy today, and not look at all that is missing. It’s just another day.
I apologize for the “pity party” that I have thrown for myself, but at least it’s a party. Oh, and Google, in its infinite snooping, posted a bunch of cakes, party favors, and candles on my home page…Happy Birthday to me!