Birthday Series: 18 days to go: What's so special about a birthday?
Just that word makes me sigh with contentment.
It's that one day of the year that's all yours. It's an event, your event, where you are the centre of attraction! All your friends remember you. Everyone's nice to you! Gifts, great food, CAKE! C'mon, how awesome are birthdays?!
Not everyone shares the sentiment though.
I was talking to a friend yesterday, saying I wanted his help in selecting a new phone which is to be my birthday gift from my sister.
He: I thought you wanted it for your birthday
He: So we have time
Me: Where? How?
He: Isn't your birthday next month?
He: Isn't the phone for the birthday?
He: So why are we picking already?
Me: Because it's for my birthday
Many people declare that their birthday is just another day. I do not get that at all. I have a friend who feels that, and I tried to force birthday cheer on her, but she just found my efforts funny and conceded to come to Subway to celebrate. I've kinda given up on her. Kinda.
Last year, I put my 50 day countdown for my birthday on my desk calendar as usual, and my friend (who is no longer a colleague :( )could not understand why anyone would start preparing for their birthday so much in advance.
So I decided to give this some thought, and figure out some root causes.
I've got three:
Family, Friends/ School & Timing
My family is one of those families which makes a big deal out of birthdays. My mom definitely was. She loved birthdays and found new ways to surprise us on ours. We always had midnight cake cutting, and lovely gifts exchanged. My sister got that memo very late. However, being the youngest, she's had some of the best birthdays in the family - having everyone plan for her.
My extended family also all wish for birthdays. Our WhatsApp group is quite active on birthdays to be sure!
2. Friends/ School
I studied at an all-girls school. Surprise parties are almost a necessity. And girls being girls, and when just with girls, find no issues with making a birthday a huge deal. I have another friend who has a big birthday calendar on her room always and checks it every day to wish people. She also does ..or has done 100 day countdowns to her birthday. So you can hardly blame my 50 day one!
Now this is a big one. You see, my birthday is almost in the mid of May. It's bang in the middle of summer holidays. So there is the: "Yaay vacations are coming! Yaay, my birthday comes with that"
There is also that, all through school, we spent summer vacations in my hometown - which meant no school friends, and a different set of vacation friends, mostly from the 8 families that lived on that street or from the 2 other known families from the neighboring street. That's fun by itself, but it has a catch. Back in my school time (probably even now - not sure what kids these days are upto) , we all had uniforms, but, just for birthdays we were given an exception - we got to wear colour dress !
That was one glorious day that birthday girls stood out from the rest of the pack. *Cue: Rose tinted glasses with rainbow bubbles blowing around* I never got to do that *Cue: Bubbles break* Making this situation harder was the fact that my sister's birthday is in June, and she got to celebrate just after school reopened. She also got to distribute chocolates in class and bigger chocolates for all the teachers! I never go to do that either. My mom though, sweetheart that she was, did her best to recreate this for me - I've always gone around giving chocolates to my neighbours on my birthdays (back in vacation time, not now) and the added perk was that it was a holiday, so I got to be freeeee! (Probably why I still always take the day off on my birthday, heh) She also told me (once as I was openly crying out of jealousy) that my birthday was better because all the family got to be there, and they all gave me gifts, I could play with my friends, and we got to eat everything I loved.
Do you see the allure of birthdays now? Can you blame me for loving them so much? Or for looking forward to them!
18 days to go :D
I'm off to select the phone now!