I’m the hero of this story, I don’t need to be saved
-Regina Spektor, Hero
Honestly, I don’t know what I am going to say today. I realize I put up a lot of posts about regrets, about things changing, about faith, inspiration, love, thoughts, musings. Maybe that is what makes this blog part-diary. I wanted to talk about other people, for once. How they’re all full of a little good and a little bad. We see the bad things daily and we guard our hearts against them. We are forever weary of other people and the lies and deceptions they go through. And of course we need to, because otherwise we’ll be left high and dry. But sometimes its good to see the nice things. Can I tell you a little secret? The one day you get to see a whole bunch of people being nice at the same time is on your birthday. What is it about a birthday? Its just another day, isn’t it? Well, yes and no. You’re living on this earth and its a wonderful life so maybe you need to celebrate it once in a while. But for me, a birthday is just one day of the year when you’re important to everyone in your life.
I am far from being an attention-seeker, since I am one of those people who likes to hide behind things like this blog. Words come out easily this way and I can rant about how wonderful life is from behind a computer screen. Usually, a day or two before my birthday I play the scene in my head: a cake and candles and me, lots of smiling around and everyone’s eyes on me. Call me crazy, but the thought makes me uncomfortable. As a child, I did not always appreciate my parents’ throwing me a huge party with games and food. But they always did it, out of a lot of love and a desire to make me realize especially on that one day of the year, that I was very special to them. That I was loved and I had reasons to smile. So, despite the discomfort, when the birthday moment was finally upon me, the butterflies would go away. You know why? Because people made it better. People smiling at you, teasing you, giving you gifts, singing ‘Happy birthday’!
It may be ten years later and I might still not like attention, but that nice warm birthday feeling is what I like. Its not about knowing that you’re special. Its about knowing the people to whom you’re special.
That’s what a birthday is all about. And this birthday I sure felt special, in the kind of way I’ve always wanted. The people who sought me out at midnight were people I can look in the eye with a genuine smile and say ‘thank you’ and mean it fully, without wearing any masks at all.
The people who brought me a beautiful cake and great balloons and made everything so messy that I had to shower at 2 am, made me feel wonderful and happy inside; they were all there for me and to me, it didn’t feel like it was a duty they were performing, but a way of telling me they loved me.
I loved all the special birthday messages that the special people of my life wrote for me; whether it was a heartfelt genuine poem, written by someone who isn’t a regular writer like yours truly but when he does write, I know how much it is meant. Or a long birthday message written on a card which was hand-delivered to me at 3 am and made me feel inadequate towards the goodwill generated in it. Or my 9 year-old brother’s handmade card which I have showed off to all my Facebook friends. Or the great birthday message my cousin wrote on my wall.
And of course, every little phone call, sms, wall post or Whatsapp message is just another reminder that someone knows its your birthday, even though Facebook might be the godsend messenger of birthday-joy-spreading.
But some of the best stuff during your tender years of early adulthood, still comes from your parents.
Oops I guess this has turned into a birthday thank you post though I didn’t mean for it to.
A little candid confession: Last year, I wondered if a certain somebody I used to be really good friends with, would wish me at all but she chose not to. Burning bridges seemed more important to her than building new ones. It made me sad then, though now it doesn’t anymore. I haven’t ever said anything directly on my blog about this but I guess now I just want to say that despite all the good in people that is revealed to you on your birthday, some of the bad stuff is right there if you want to pick it out too. And sadly I have. Sometimes people just want you to read their minds and figure out on your own how you’ve messed up. Well we’re not mind-readers or psychics. The truth is, some friendships just cannot stand the pressure that comes externally ie. vis-a-vis other people and their constant attempts to break you. Those friendships make me feel sad.
So I remembered the one time when I was telling her about something that was bothering me, and then she said, ‘Well and if that’s how you felt about it, did you ever stop to think about how it made me feel?’
The true answer to that is, no. I did not. I never did and you never told me. So there. Merci beaucoup.