Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!!

40 years ago today a young woman, probably alone and scared, pushed me into this world and did the most unselfish thing possible and gave me away in the knowledge that I'd be better taken care of. Or else she didn't have room in her VW bug for a baby and her bongo drums, but whatever. In any case, September 19th was my debut and I've taking extra bows ever since.

The big birthdays always give me some growing pains. I remember turning 10 and a friend of my mother's making a big deal about being "2 digits! You're 2 digits now! You'll never be anything else but 2 digits!" and I thought nervously to myself, well shit, maybe 2 digits is too much to handle, jeez lady, get a grip and shut up you're freaking me out!! Then I ate cake. Of course looking back now it was silly but my sensitive cheese-brain got a little stressed out over it.

Photographic evidence: Home haircut and 2 giant front teeth swallowing my whole face.

Then there was 13. The intro age into teenagerdome. The time when I was straddling between being a little kid and being a little lady. Barbies in one hand and lip gloss in the other. I clearly recall loving that age because for a short time I could bounce between those 2 worlds with ease. Until the zits and periods showed up that same year (on the school sanctioned 4 day ski trip thank you very fucking much.)

Photographic evidence: High waisted pants and feathered hair.

Then there was sweet 16. People really make a big stink about that one. In my day it was left-overs from the 50's when 16 meant you were about a minute from being engaged so your family could marry you off the day after graduation with corresponding songs by bouffant haired blonds crowding the airwaves. Now it's the second or third? MTV generation with the spoiled rich bitches sobbing onto their Escalade dashboards when mommy won't let them wear nothing but duct tape to their party. Mean mommy!

I was really excited about my 16th birthday and started planning my party a couple of months in advance. For some reason my mother felt a party that year was unnecessary. I think it was because she turned 16 in that golden age I mentioned above but her family didn't have the money or inclination to celebrate beyond a family mention and maybe a cake, so she put the stop on that. It was horrible a the time but I get it now. I was allowed to invite 1 special friend to a fancy restaurant and had an OK time.

Photographic evidence: Very liberally applied gray eye shadow. Oi.

Then there was 18. I think I had a big party. I can't really remember but I do recollect being a slight bit worried that I was now "legal" and could get arrested for statutory rape so I needed to be careful. Christ on a crutch, the things that go through my dumb brain. Like that would ever happen, not-to-mention I was still a virgin. Tard.

Photographic evidence: ??

21 had it's pressure to be perfect with the perfect amount of debauchery and hope that I'd finally get to whip out my ID and the bar would have to serve me because HA HA! I'm legal now boyee. I've always looked younger than I am and the ID scramble lost its magic a few years later and now I just laugh HA HA HA and thank them.

I turned the magic age of drinking on a Monday night. Not the best part of the week for partying. I went out with my then boyfriend and best girlfriend and we bar hopped from one empty establishment to the next pouring booze down my throat until I was literally blind. Of course the next day I was sick as a dog but I supposed I reached my goal.

Photographic evidence: The universe's largest shoulder pads holding up my giant head of hair.

When I turned 30 I was in a weird place in my life. I'd filed for divorce, finally got my asshole husband out of the house and wasn't feeling like a penis magnet. At the last minute I decided, screw it, I'm throwing myself a fucking party and that's just what I did. I rented out a private loft at my favorite bar, invited a plethora of friends and acquaintances, got properly hammered and made out with a 24 year old stranger I met on the dance floor. It changed my way of thinking forever.

Photographic evidence: Me and the stud bleary eyed with pink rings of my lipstick smeared around our mouths. Excellent.

Today I turn 40. Life has gone in a zillion different directions in the last 10 years. Some good, some bad, some I never dreamed of for all varieties of reasons. Big birthdays like this always make your life score-card pop up in front of your face. Accomplishments, goals, obstacles overcome. What's the score?

I've been having a hard time with this one but I did with all the others too. And with age hopefully comes wisdom and I know it's just a stupid number and I can't let that panicky voice in my head take over telling me I can't do stuff now because it's never too late and one of the perks of getting old is not giving a fuck what other people think. So there. And of course there have been triumphs and if I want more it's up to me to do it.

I'm so grateful for what I have. A few years ago I was afraid I'd never make it to this age and I'm so glad to be here. Looking beyond the number, because GAH! 40! How the fuck did that happen? I choose to celebrate the awesome stuff about myself and focus on the good things in my life.

I'm so fortunate to be with the love of my life. As lame as it may sound, I didn't know it could be like this. Even when he leaves the oven on and he's snoring and I want to smother him a wee bit with a pillow, I'm still blown away by the love I feel for him and from him.

I have some of the most spectacular friends a person could hope to have. They are funny and kind and tough when they need to be and aren't scared away by my shit. My famdamily is like every other, a bunch of weirdo's with baggage but I've had a good life and have always been taken care of and I love them. Even my jerky brother.

Today I salute the woman who gave birth to me and the parents who did the rest of the very hard work. I thank my lovely friends and send kisses to my family. Virtual hugs for my online friends for being so kick freaking ass. Love and all that shit for you all! And for my baby, I cherish you for taking such good care of my heart. You've kept your promise and I love you more than my luggage.

I took the day off today to lounge and relax and eat chocolate until I go into a sugar coma. I'll put the final plans into place for my party this weekend, which happens to be at the same bar from 10 years ago, and eat my favorite junk food. I will take a nice long nap. I will be nice to myself. I'd like it if you would do the same.

Photographic evidence: You'll just have to wait and see.

14 comments:

Michelle said...

Aww, Happy Birthday, Betty!

Curvy girl said...

Happy Birthday!! I hope that when 40 rolls around for me that I will be as happy and content with life as you are today.

Xica said...

Happy Birthday Girl! Love ya.

Anonymous said...

"Very liberally applied grey eyeshadow" I LOVE IT....at least you didn't accent it with electric blue eyeliner and MASCARA like I did. THAT is the photographic evidence that will haunt me.

Fantastic post and hope all your birthday wishes come true!!

Sugapie

NouveauBlogger said...

Happy Birthday....we're close in age and I believe you're as young as you feel. Have fun :)

Joan said...

Happy BDay hon. I'm liking the unimbittered (is that a word) Betty.

I wonder every year on my birthday "how the hell did I get here?" And the answer is always the same...in a taxi.

Bitter Betty said...

Thank you all for the birthday wishes! It was a great day. :)

little bitchass said...

Happy birthday Betty! Sorry I was a day late... Remember, you're only as old as the age you admit to everybody else!

Keep on crankin' out the great material!

little bitchass

No_Newz said...

Day late and a dollar short, Happy Birthday!!! :)

Special K said...

Aw, frig. I totally missed your birthday...I wish I could say it was because I was busy with work, or in the throes of a violent erotic adventure, but that would be an extravagant lie.

I was at home napping.

Happy (belated) Birthday, sexy mama!

Avalon said...

Oh no Betty, I missed it! Damn! I was so busy bailing the water from my basement after the washer exploded. I'm sorry. Can I still send you the Mercedes and the diamonds?


Happiest of years, my friend!

Avalon said...

And Betty........it's not REALLY photographic evidence until you show us all the pics. ALL of them.

sognatrice said...

Oh I'm very late here, but this is my first day (of many I'm sure) at your blog, so I hope you'll still accept the birthday wishes. Or perhaps I should just say Happy 40 years and 17 days?

Glad to have found you through NaBloPoMo :)

Dharma said...

I am so late in saying HB but frankly my life has been crazy and haven't been reading almost any blogs, nor writing my own much. Love you babe.