Birthday Expectations

I was married on my birthday. Unusual, yes, but it’s true. Two of the biggest days of my life are on the same date, and on the same day of the week even.

When deciding on the day to get married, I really wanted it to be on an equinox or a solstice for the symbolic reason of change, of balance, and of the newness that comes with the changing of the seasons. My first choice was not my birthday however, my first choice was the spring equinox in the southern hemisphere in September, but due to my finals at Uni falling exactly amidst that timeframe, it was out. We chose to go with my birthday instead, which in the southern hemisphere is the autumnal equinox.

It was symbolic on many levels, of night and day being in balance, of my own personal rebirth, of this new life beginning on the day that I first took air in this body, of the commitment that it would no longer just be me alone in my journey. Along with this, the more practical thought was that it would be easy to remember, and would give reason for a bigger celebration because the two were merged into one.

It’s a funny thing when birthdays come around, and major holidays for that matter too. It’s like we’ve been preprogrammed, or have been advertised so much to expect a lot on these days, like a grand celebration must occur in order to have happiness in life. Almost due to this weird programming, I’ve bucked the trend and haven’t really celebrated major holidays or my birthday, not really, in quite a while. I wonder now if it’s also due to feeling like I didn’t want to be disappointed if I wasn’t able to afford a celebration that I would consider to be good. As much as I try my best not to compare, it is hard for me not to when everyone around also celebrates and the common question after is “so what did you get?”. This has always been weird for me anyway because I grew up in a family who didn’t have very many financial resources, so our holidays were always a bit slim on gifts, but we always had plenty of food, enough to invite others along who didn’t have someplace to go or something to eat.

So I wonder now, if I subconsciously wanted to have my birthday and wedding anniversary on the same date, to help me avoid feeling at a loss of what my expectations were or are. Perhaps due to my constant pushing back of it saying that I don’t really celebrate is a way to protect myself from feeling less than, of feeling unimportant, of feeling that I didn’t get what I wanted.

Sure, I can go and buy what I want for myself, and honestly I think that way about most things from day to day life, like buying myself flowers so that any additional flowers I get are just an added bonus. However, I feel like I want someone to fuss over me now, to feel special, to feel celebrated.

Perhaps this is why most of the time when my birthday rolls around I feel a bit of a loss, and kind of sad. I haven’t wanted to share my desires for being cared for extra specially on my birthday, and in turn, I haven’t been. If I truly did not care, I wouldn’t feel this uncomfortable feeling in my throat and tears wouldn’t be streaming down my face.

I pretty much forced my husband into taking our toddler and I on his work trip abroad because the days happened to fall over my birthday and our anniversary, even though we cannot actually afford this trip at the moment. The same trip where it’s already been said that this shouldn’t have happened and we are only a couple of days into it. I must find a way for myself to not feel like a burden. I feel like I’m having a pity party for myself right now.

I feel like I need to have my own money and the freedom to spend it. I need to have my own power. I need to have my own independence and not feel limited. I need to be celebrated, and to feel loved in a celebratory way.

As I move forward, I will celebrate. I normally say that any excuse for a celebration, and I’m in, and I’m going to now include holidays and birthdays too.

On the eve of my 36th birthday I feel like I am coming clean.