It is my birthday and I am not ashamed to say that I love birthday month. I'm not really a center of attention type of person; I don't relish getting older, but I love an excuse to do things entirely selfishly that are just for fun. I embrace the meals with family and friends; the spice cake, zucchini bread, drinks, and coffees; I cherish the FB posts, texts, calls, well wishers, birthday buddies, girls trips, thoughtful little cards, and tiny thoughtful treasures.
Most years, since my Freshman year of college, I have ditched (not just school or work but responsibility and duty) and dragged someone with me. 99.99453% of the year, I hold myself accountable (translation: boring), but on my birthday, I want to be entirely carefree and un-tethered. My Dear Best Friend from college / Room-mate is really the one who started this craze. We would spend glorious days at museums, the beach, sleeping in, pedicures, and spa trips (in that brief period where we both had disposable income). She embraced the ditch day like no one else (sometimes we expanded it to a week to encompass both our birthdays - and at this point I just admit it and call September birthday month). Eventually I dragged my then boyfriend (now DH) into this debauchery (which he was a more then willing participant and even handled the predictable consequences with dignity).
As if ditching weren't enough, I do something that is a total waste of time. One year I messed around on Adobe Creative Suite for hours. Other years I plan trips we are decades from being able to take or design house projects we have no intention of completing this side of the kids' college. I've organized thousands of pictures into digital collages that I will probably never have the money to print. Last year, I played on Pinterest for an entire day. This year, I set up my goodreads account; I entered books read over the last 3 years and then went back and thought of some of my favorite (and least favorite) books from my college and high school years. It was a wonderful walk down memory lane and so fun. The only problem is looking at the lists of books: I can almost hear the words of my favorite college English / literature professor, Dr. Rosalie deRosset, as she glances down my rather lengthy selection and with a sigh of abandon says,
At one time I read for enlightenment and knowledge and to become a better person, going way beyond books assigned for classes, but my most recent books are a barrage of romantic comedies and fluff, intermixed with best sellers. I rationalize to my internal conscience that I read them so I can remain current and because the real world is quite serious enough, but in reality, mindless reading is easy (and fun and I like Twilight / karmic / happy endings). If Goodreads has done one thing, it has been a reminder of the quality literature that I've always wanted to read but had forgotten (or repressed). I can't wait to go back to our favorite library (with my DD who also loves to read) and pick those up.
and I will pass on a legacy of calculated, selfish, and safe birthday debauchery...