I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but you’re currently reading the blog of someone who’s only had six actual birthdays.
I’ve never understood why people react with such pity when they find out I was born on Feburary 29. On Leap Years, I’m completely justified in having a gigantic celebration. Not that I have enough friends to invite to a big party, but if I did, I would have epic celebrations.
note to self: make more friends in the next three years
The general public thinks my birthday is February 28th. My family says it’s March 1st. I tend to side with my parents, but I just go with the flow by accepting the Facebook notifications on the 28th and knowing my grandma will call me on March 1st to sing to me. Last night she called around nine. She didn’t even bother greeting me, she just started crooning. While she was singing, I told her I thought she forgot. “Don’t interrupt a polack when they’re singing,” she told me after her performance. She’s full of great life lessons.
I spent Thursday evening at my parents’ house, then I went home, determined to get some reading done. Instead I ended up spending about three hours on the phone with Andrea. Sometime around 11:30, we decided to stay on the phone till midnight so we could ring in my birthday together. I think I got to bed around 1am, which made Friday a long day.
Friday started out just fine. I woke up with an absurd amount of energy for getting about four hours of restless sleep. I decided to dress all fancy and post a selfie on Facebook because that’s a thing adults do, right? My department had thrown a small pig-out for a coworker who was moving to a different department, so I didn’t pack a breakfast. I had three cups of coffee and a donut. Around 11:3o, I decided to touch base with my brother, who works in a different department, to see if he had lunch plans.
“No, I haven’t thought about it,” he told me in a biting and exasperated tone. “I’ll probably just go out and grab something.”
“Okay, well do you want to plan on going to Festival at like 12:30?”
“Ash, just go by yourself. I just got this project and I have to work on it.”
I slammed my phone on the receiver, appreciating the satisfying smack of a pissed off phone slam you can’t achieve by aggressively pressing the END button on a touch screen. “Well fuck you,” I said in my head. “Don’t be nice to me on my birthday.” Then I started doing that inner angry-crying thing where I threw the most intense 20 second pity party the world has ever known.
It’s my birthday and I didn’t even have cake yet and you can’t be nice to me and I didn’t even get much sleep and why is it too much to ask to take lunch a half hour later than usual and damnit, Corey, you don’t need to be a jerk to me on my birthday and gosh this is the worst birthday ever and omigosh I can’t even get my brother to be nice to me and what an asshole and what is wrong with my life if I’m about to cry in my cubicle on my birthday and oh my god if I cry and ruin my eyeliner I am going to be so mad and oh my gosh Corey should be buying my lunch anyway because it’s my birthday and oh my god nobody loves me and I am so alone because nobody understands me ever.
When my stomach grumbled, I realized I hadn’t taken care of myself that morning. I blinked a few dozen times to make my hunger tears go away and started my Dan Savage inner monologue.
You need to calm the fuck down. This might come as a shock to you, but the world does not revolve around you. What did you expect? It’s not like Corey’s supposed to coordinate a fucking food parade for you just because it’s your birthday. He’s got his own shit to deal with. Now put on your big girl heels and go get yourself some damn food – something more substantial than a damn sprinkled donut. What were you thinking anyway? Yeah, that’s some great brain fuel, Ashley. Sugar and caffeine. Breakfast of fucking champions right there.
I imagine some people kindly talk themselves out of these sorts of things. You know what, self? You normally make better food choices and you know that it feels better. So just go get yourself something with a lot of protein. You’ll have a much better afternoon. Also, you’re gorgeous and perfect. Don’t forget that, self. Obviously my brain works a little differently. I don’t react to coddling; I react to a bitch slap.
Before going to lunch, I decided to finish up the file I was working on to give myself a chance to calm down. Corey called back a few minutes later and apologized for being short. Then he asked if I still wanted to go to Festival.
On the way back from the store, I told Corey about what had gone through my head. We had a good laugh and went back to our desks. I basically inhaled my lunch (fruit and dip with a bowl of chili that was essentially a quarter pound of ground chuck drizzled with some chunky tomato sauce) and marveled at my renewed sense of optimism. Isn’t it kind of amazing how much food and rest can affect your mood? I bet Africa is full of crabby people.
All in all, my twenty-fifth birthday has been good. It’s been sort of a week-long endeavor: on Sunday I met an old friend from high school who gave me a Real Book so I can start butchering some jazz standards. My aunt sent me a package full of goodies. My roommate indulged my New Girl fangirl and gave me a copy of The Douche Journals. Last night, Andrea showed up with six and a quarter red velvet cupcakes before we went out with a few friends for shots and cucumber vodka drinks. Tonight Vince (he’s the academic, I’ve mentioned him enough times that it’s getting weird for me to not use his name) is making me dinner. Tomorrow, I’m spending the afternoon with my family for cake and quality time.
Now that I can rent a car at a reasonable price, get cheaper car insurance, I’m sure I’ll run out of things to blog about since I’ll stop making all the mistakes women in their early twenties make. Just kidding, I’ll keep drinking too much coffee and swearing at people in my head.