Misadventures of a 20-Something Mom: Happy Birthday to Me: Reflections of a 20-something (5!) year old   

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me: Reflections of a 20-something (5!) year old

So, the hour is drawing near. Tomorrow, I will be a quarter of a century old.
I always wondered why old people hate birthdays. I have always been a HUGE fan of them. Seriously, birthdays are no joke in this house. I milk them for all I can..even going so far as to invent the "birthday month" in our house. (This entitles the birthday-ee to unlimited favors, television shows, etc until his/her birthday passes.) For me that equates to 3 whole weeks of awesomeness. With all this celebration to look forward to, I've never understood why people would DOWNPLAY such a stupendous day.

I think I got a glimpse of this "birthday-humbug syndrome" these past 2 weeks. I've been in a bit of a funk. People kept asking me what I wanted to do to celebrate, and for the life of me I just couldn't think of anything.

Here are some of my hangups:
1. I have yet to lose the "baby" weight so rocking some tiny, black frock and going clubbing or something doesn't appeal at all.
2. I've never been a big drinker. I love me some wine, but I save the hard stuff for maybe once or twice a year when I am out on the town. My birthday would typically be one of these times. A time to be reckless, drink martinis like a Sex and the City girl, maybe even do a shot or two. This year, I can't help but think about the day after. The idea of a hangover, on top of my day-to-day sleep deprivation sounds about as fun as an ice-pick to my eye-ball.
3. I wasn't too sure who I would even invite to a birthday bash. Do I invite the friends I've had for ages, who are single and childless? Am I still cool enough to hang with them? Or do I ask my brand new "mommy" friends, who understand if I have a spitty cheerio stuck in my hair, but might be awkwarded out by a birthday invitation? I feel like I am in some kind of friend limbo.

It would be easy to dwell on these; to have a pity party and wallow in my humbug funk.
Motherhood has certainly shaken things up in my life. Made the aging process more interesting.

I am not the person I used to be.

I am a new person...and I'm still getting to know this new me. But you know what? This "new" me is insisting on looking at the bright side. So here goes.

Being 25 means:
1. I know to take Advil, stay hydrated, and eat lots of carbs before/during/after my birthday wine binge. That way I won't be hugging the porcelain god like in years past. Score-for hard-earned knowledge.
2. I'll still wake up with bite marks on my arms, legs, neck, etc. However, unlike other birthdays, these love bites are from a teething 10 month old, rather than an illicit rendezvous. Onlookers won't know the difference and I'll revel in the judgemental glares.
3. I can finally rent a car. I have zero interest in renting a car...but good to know.
4. My brain is almost finished developing. Stick a fork in me, I'm done! On second thought, I don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing. What the hell will my brain be doing for the next 60 or some odd years? I'm crossing this one off..it's kind of depressing lol.
5. I understand my mom better with each passing day. Motherhood is showing me how to be humble, to see a little bit of good in everyone (because after all they are someone's baby), to recognize all the beauty in the world, to determine my real priorities, to forgive quicker, to be selfless, and how to keep breathing...even though my heart no longer resides in my body.
6. I can be legitimately happy with where I am in life and what I have achieved. I finished school and now have a Master's degree in my bag of tricks. I have a fantastic husband, who loves and understands me at every level, and has made the past 7 years of my life truly spectacular. I've been blessed with an amazing, funny, rage-prone little baby who teaches me new things about the world and re-shapes my perspectives every single day. It's surreal to know that I have everything I ever wanted out of life.

At 25, now all I have to do is enjoy it.


  1. Happy Birthday Amanda!! Love your writing!!

  2. Happy birthday, my funny, beautiful daughter. Life seems to speed up a lot now (not really sure why) but I am glad you have learned early to stop (even when it is terribly inconvenient and you aren't in the mood) and smell the proverbial roses, or perhaps in your case, Reisling. Also glad to hear your patience with others has blossomed because at one time you were a tiny ball of rage too. Ah, the circle of life....
    The only thing I have ever really wished for you has been happiness. It sounds as though you have found it and for that I am eternally grateful. Happy Birthday!!!!!!