Today is my birthday.
I don’t feel 35. That sounds old. Doesn’t it? I remember when my mom turned 35. I was 10. My brother was 7.
It’s funny how perceptions get solidified at young ages sometimes. Like one time, when I was little, a little sports car shot down the road. My dad pointed to it and said, “That car is a two-seater.” I remember staring after it, baffled.
“But where do the kids sit?” I asked. Because of course every car owner was just like us, a family of four.
“Well,” my dad said, thinking. “You open the trunk and there’s this little staircase and it takes you down into this little room.” My jaw dropped. “Don’t get too excited,” he continued. “I mean, it’s really small. Just enough for a little table and a couple of chairs. Maybe a TV. That’s where the kids sit.”
I was silent for a long time. Long enough that maybe my dad thought that I knew he was kidding. Because he never ended the story with “JUST KIDDING!” He just patted me on the back and walked away. Every time I saw a two-seater sports car, I thought, “We must get one of those cars.”
That story remained embedded into my subconscious for years. I was probably into my late teens when I finally thought, “Wait… wait. Wait. THAT CAN’T BE TRUE!”
But the story had implanted in my brains at such an early age that it had worked its way into my logical processing. I remember a feeling of not only embarrassment that I had somehow believed in that magical car for so long, but also a deep, heavy disappointment tinged with betrayal.
And then the feeling of excitement to have kids of my own so I could someday play stupid lying tricks on them, too.
Thirty-five. Stay-at-home mom to two. House, husband, dog, two cars.
Me. Single working mom, living with my parents, parents cat (doesn’t count). Three fire-bellied toads (at work, doesn’t count?). One car. New! Red! Just purchased after my 10-year old car finally gave up the ghost two weeks ago. But mine! A major purchase! First time buyer! Bought on my own! With… some help of my parents. So.
I’m not doing anything for my actual birthday today. My mom bought a lemon meringue pie instead of a birthday cake this year, per my request. It was my grandpa’s favorite and I’m feeling nostalgic. So we’ll eat that and my dad will sing his version of the birthday song, which goes “People dying everywhere but have a happy birthday!” sung to the tune of Yankee Doodle Dandy. I have no idea how that tradition got started.
Last Saturday I invited a few friends out for a birthday dinner at one of my favorite places:
Afterwards we met up with some more friends at a bar where we had a small room reserved in the back. There was a stripper pole, so it is known as the “stripper pole room.” I was very excited to get this room because it meant guaranteed seats, which meant guaranteed sitting. This is a sign that I am old. Luckily, most of my friends were also excited to be sitting, which means that they are also old, which means I am hanging with the appropriate social group. The only pole action we got was from homie who we had to collectively pay $28 for five minutes of seductively awkward spinning.
He begged me not to tag him. But he said nothing about blogging him.
Anyway, at around 12:30 AM I decided that my arthritis was getting to me and I needed to get home to soak my dentures. My dear friend gave me a book that sort of sums up my life right now, as well as our relationship, again proving to me that I am choosing the right friends:
Thirty-five. Halfway through life, maybe.
Am I doing this right? You know… life? Am I where I’m supposed to be? I know a lot of people. And they seem to be like, homeowners and business owners and, like, I don’t know. Successful and stuff.
I have an almost 2-year old kiddo. She’s the greatest thing I’ve ever done. She’s smart and funny and sweet and can probably bend spoons with her mind. Above all, she’s happy. So I must be doing something right.
Thirty-five years old. Two-years old.
Here I am at two-years old on my birthday. That’s my mom holding me. That’s my birthday cake.
My mom went to Jewel and asked them to make a Cookie Monster cake. Apparently, the baker had never heard of Sesame Street before and instead made me a terrifying monster cake out of cookies. Talk about Cake Wrecks. I mean, Jesus! Just look at that thing! The blood-shot eyes! The horrible teeth! My mom was so mad. But she was like “Eff it, I don’t have time for this, we’re eating this damn thing anyway,” and jammed a candle into it’s awful skull.
Wait. That’s totally something I would do.
Ok, I feel better now.