Sunday, November 27, 2005


I only remember from my past a handful of my birthdays. I have pictures from one when I was probably turning three or four. It's hard to tell. I look five, but I was tall for my age. The picture was taken when we still lived in Levittown. We moved to Florida in '70 or '71. I was three or four when we moved there. There are two birthdays in Florida that I recall slightly. I can't figure out which one came first. But, I think they were actually back-to-back birthdays. One birthday was when we lived on Palm Dr. I had a party and invited something like forty people to it but only four or five showed up. I was disappointed for all of five minutes, then ran off with those who did show up to play down the street on the neighbor's trampoline. The other birthday was a surprise party. I knew that a party was being planned, I just didn't know when. Oh, I vaguely recall another party that preceded the year of the surprise party. It was when we were living in the house behind "The Little Pickle." My brothers did something to make me cry so I locked myself in the bathroom. I didn't have a bedroom, I slept on the couch with my younger brother. The bathroom was the only place I could be alone. I recall someone singing "It's my party and I'll cry if I want to...cry if I want to." Hmm, maybe that was me.

Back to the day of the surprise party, you would think that I would have been happy but I wasn't. It ruined my plans in so many ways. I wanted to buy an ice cream cake with my birthday money for my mom as a surprise. I thought she was taking me to the store so I could. She said she was, but, she just had to make a quick stop at the restaurant. I didn't want to go there. It was during a period of one of their break-ups. I knew what stopping by the restaurant would mean - that he'd be moving back in again. I was surprised when everyone jumped up from behind the counter. I knew I was having a party, I just didn't expect it to be then. I still wanted to get a cake for my mom. He ran me to the store real quick. After all, it was her birthday too. You see, I was born on my mom's birthday. No. We don't share a birthday. It's hers. I just happen to have been born that day. So it seems.

I recall a few other birthday celebrations through the years. One, I don't think she was even there when I was in sixth or seventh grade and had a few girls sleep over. I remember we baked my birthday cake and I remember my brother's corny joke about my friend MaryJane's name. His jokes haven't improved much over the years. I remember the cake from my sixteenth birthday. Or, maybe I'm just recalling the picture that I have of it. I don't think we really celebrated it at all, other than to have cake one night after dinner.

There are a couple of birthdays that I remember as an adult. I remember when I turned twenty my boyfriend got me two necklaces. One was a gold chain with a pearl pendant, because pearls were my favorite stone. The other necklace had one of those sappy half-pendants where he wore one half and I wore the other. When we broke up, I mailed it back to him with a nasty letter. There are a few other birthdays in my memory repertoire but that's not really what this is about. You see, I wasn't home all day on my birthday this year because I went with friends to the Aquarium of the Pacific and had a most magical time as a celebration of the day - my birthday. By the time I got home, it was late. My dad and brother had called and left messages wishing me a happy birthday. I didn't call them back. I was too tired and it's a three hour time difference. In the second message from my brother, it said my mother was down in the dumps because I hadn't called her on her birthday. Funny thing is that she didn't call me on mine either. Should I be upset?


Unhinged said...

Well, I'd be mad.

Then I'd cave because that's what I do. I'd just melt like a wet sugar cake and call her and get it over with.

But that's me. You might prefer to stew a while ... to let her stew a while. (But what if she is hit by a garbage truck tomorrow and dies instantly? Then what? Will the fact that you held off from calling her because she's having an unfair fit, make you feel as if you did the right thing?)

Hey, I dunno. I'm just here for the cake. Where is it, by the way?

Becky said...

Happy Belated Birthday, first of all. LOL! And I am so glad I wasn't born on MY mother's birthday. Sounds like your mom and mine have a similar attitude. Mother's Dad is all about my mother. Not me. Does she forget that I'm a mother now, too? *sigh*

Becky said...

Make that "Mothers DAY" not Dad. LOL

WriterRob said...

Happy Happy Birthday! (clapping hands and singing like a demented waiter at TGI Fridays!) Hope you had wonderful memories that you can remember in the future.

And since we're sharing, my favorite birthday memory was when I was in grad school and some of my friends decided to throw me a surprise birthday party. At McDonald's. About six months before/after my actual birthday. So it was a real surprise. But I got the McDonald's cake and a stuffed Grimace, so it's all good.

Lisa :-] said...

First of all, happy birthday, Robbie.

Second of all...your mother sounds very much like mine. We are all supposed to call, visit, pay obeisance to HER. I'm pretty sure she doesn't even KNOW my phone number. Oh well... Lisa :-]

ChasingMoksha said...

Oh my.........Happy Belated Birthday....

I'm not good with the mother/daughter thing, not when I am the daughter anyway. I have not talked to my mother since 98, but that is just me. I am not a person who is willing to drink poison when the glass is labeled poison. So I don't know what to tell you, sorry. I guess I just want to say I was here and read this.

Unhinged said...

Man, I laughed myself into a runny nose over Writer Rob's comment! Funny stuff, that.

Carly said...

Oh darlin

Happy belated birthday. The relationshiip with our mothers is not an easy one. Sigh. (((Hugs))))

Carly :)

V said...

Hon, you write so well. I`m always so impressed.
And, Happy Birthday!, belaytedly.
{Call your Mom}

Anonymous said...

First of all, you should call your mother. She is the one most likely to die tomorrow, not you. She's always going to be your mother, and there is nothing you can do about it. Love her the way she is, not for the way you want her to be.

Secondly, you didn't happen to mention on this post the flowers I sent you.

Luv ya.


gigi said...

I'd be irritated, and more than a little sad. But you can't teach an old dog new tricks.

Call her and tell her,"Hi Mom! Sorry I couldn't call you on your birthday, but a bunch of my friends insisted I celebrate my birthday by going out to the Aquarium with them! It was an all day event; we had a blast and I didn't get a chance to call. So how was yours?" Then tell her you love her. She is who she is, and you'll feel bad if you don't.

One more thing ~ Never. Ever. Give back jewelry. ;D

Judith HeartSong said...

you deserve to feel loved and to have joyous celebrations. Come see Virginia and I next time and we will give you a week long celebration!