If I take away love
If I take away us
If I get up and leave
Would that be enough?
Letoya – Take Away Love
I can’t tell you exactly when my birthday stopped being fun, but there are definitely some memorable milestones. My parents’ anniversary was two days later, so when they separated my mother would always get emo around my birthday because it was a reminder of her failed marriage.
June is also a transitionary month: graduation, summer vacation…people don’t tend to have the same schedule they normally have in June so it’s always hard to coordinate a party.
So this year, when it was announced my favorite musician Christina Aguilera was releasing a new album the week of my birthday, I had hopes of making it a special time celebrating.
My birthday came and no one showed up.
I can’t say I was surprised, but I was hurt nonetheless. The excuses varied: work, wedding, funeral, poverty, homophobia, sick in hospital…you name it, I heard it. The funny thing is I actually like spending my birthday alone. I had a fantastic time all by my damn self. My concern (as always) is the process. No one alerted me with decent amount of time they were busy so I couldn’t plan accordingly.
The worse part (read: best) is the aftermath where you actually get to see where people are coming from. I have a straight identified friend who was out of town for my birthday tell me:
“Let’s go drink, I want to take you out for your birthday…but it has to be a straight club.”
Like who does that? Seriously.
The same thing happened when I “graduated” last year. My family fought and fought about the logistics of getting to the ceremony in San Francisco. Sister #1 wanted to turn the trip into a vacation, Sister #2 couldn’t get off of work, my grandmother was ashamed because she doesn’t fly and my mother was worried about paying for it all. It got to the point where I said, “You know what, you all don’t have to come, it’s alright.” Two days that should have been all about me, drowned in the selfish bullshit of others.
Every so often I have to go into hibernation. I love and accept the people I choose to keep in my life for who they are, but every so often it becomes clear I invest more into them than they do in me. These periods of hibernation usually occur around my birthday (June) and November (beginning of the holiday season). I don’t ask for much, but even the little I do seems to be too much to expect from people.
When did people become so selfish? I would demand reciprocity, but people don’t want accountability, they want what they want, when they want it and nothing more.
I keep feeling like I’m crazy for wanting logical things like a return phone call.
I always knew I would peak in my thirties. Although I can’t articulate it fully it basically comes down to personality. What I bring to a relationship (romantic or otherwise): maturity, intelligence, confidence, education, etc. aren’t generally valued by people in their twenties. So you can only imagine how painful it is to be twenty nine. Happiness seems so close, yet so far away.
Something’s gonna give pretty soon.