Saturday, February 20, 2010

February 20: Birthday

Both my feet are now firmly planted in middle-age: today I'm 43. My family has fortunately always been one to celebrate special days, rather than mourn getting a year older, so I'm OK with this. And I couldn't have asked for a nicer day on the anniversary of my birth--blue sky, the river sparkling in the sun, temps in the 40s, chickadees singing their love songs in the bare branches. My mother tells me I was born during a blizzard, so by comparison this is a virtual spring to commemorate what might perhaps be called the late summer of my life. I'll take it. Beats the alternative, in terms of both weather and life.

As you get older, people make much less of a big deal about your birthday unless it's a milestone year. My husband was working all day, so I had no real plans other than a visit with a friend recovering from recent surgery and dinner out tonight with my husband and parents at Lily Bistro. Future plans to connect with friends will drag out the celebration a bit, but I think it'll be another seven years before I'm getting a real party.

So I have to say, as much as people criticize electronic technology for depersonalizing our relationships, e-mail and Facebook have totally made my birthday a funny kind of virtual party. I received maybe half a dozen moving e-mails today from family and friends (including a wonderful horoscope telling me that, like Poland in 1918, the return of my sovereignty in imminent). And I've gotten a gazillion good wishes on Facebook--from family and friends all over the country, including one currently in the Galapagos Islands. Sure, Facebook is reminding them that today is my birthday. And OK, a couple of them I hardly know. But they didn't have to say anything. Most of my birthday wishes were sincere and heartfelt sentiments from friends from whom I would otherwise not have heard from in the normal course of events. I felt the positive vibes. This is a good thing. Thank you, everyone! (And for all of you who wished me good birds, I hope to take advantage of that tomorrow.)

Also, my mother called to sing "Happy Birthday" to me, which she does every year. It's not really my birthday till I get that morning call from Mom.

One year older now,
I'm still a child when Mom sings,
grateful to be here.

Update: Right after posting this, my sister and niece called to sing "Happy Birthday" to me too--another gift!

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