I turn 44 tomorrow. Technically, I turn 44 at 11:13 PM tomorrow, meaning my birthday was almost Sept. 10 instead of September. 9. But at this point, that and what they may or may not have done to my mother to get my oh-so-large 5 pound self out doesn’t really matter. However, I’ll never live down the broken tailbone they gave her to get me out. Believe me, it’s like the nightmarish bedtime story I cannot escape. Do you ever feel guilty about your own birth? I do.
But. Tomorrow. Thursday. September 9. It’s my birthday. Broken tailbones or not. I’m definitely starting to reach that point at which I shrug off birthdays. Just another day! Except I want it to be more than another day. Just a little bit. Maybe not worth a whole to-do, but maybe a bit of one. Guess I better get to work on that.
It’s been quite a year. And I’m trying to figure out my place and settle within it. To find my mooring. And a lot of times I feel like that involves quite a bit of dissembling: “of course everything is fine!” And it is. Truly. But sometimes I feel like I am collapsing in on myself like a dying star.
Oh and I’m a bit more dramatic. Sorry about that. Or not. Maybe I should stop apologizing for having feelings – some rather fucking complex ones.
So 44. A few fun facts about 44: Obama was the 44th President. 44 is a tribonacci number. 44 is the country code for the UK. It’s also the number of candles in a Hanukkah box of candles. The .44 magnum. And according to Wikipedia, 44 is both a palindromic number and a happy number. I have no idea what that means, but it makes me smile.
Inhale. Exhale. I’ve told a few people that I feel like a raw, exposed nerve lately. And I do. And it is weird when things hit and make me cry. Like tonight. Why am I crying? It’s just a birthday and not even a milestone one. I think, that as Virginia Woolf put it in To a Lighthouse, it comes back to “time passes.” 44. No spring chicken. I could see the thestrals at Hogwarts very likely. And…44. It sounds old-ish. Several hundred years ago, I’d have been preparing to retire to a nunnery, because what other use could a woman of that advanced age have?? Though I suspect I’d raise some hell in a nunnery.
As Prufrock says:
“I grow old … I grow old …
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.”
But. But. Though I toy with melancholia, I have good spirits. It’s just another year around the sun. I am very fortunate to have Daniel, the kitties, friends old and new, and a job I love. I have a lot going for me (looks around frantically for something on which to knock on wood).
It will be OK. My birthday will be a good day regardless of what may come.
It’s just a day. But it is my day. Happy Birthday to me.