Blogging My birthday, Arjewtino style

On June 24th I stopped by Arjewtino’s blog for my regular helping of his unique heeby wisdom (I do so love my people!). I was not disappointed – an ironic birthday celebration was in full swing. And I do love irony. So with a tip of the birthday hat to the master …

My Birthday is on the way here. In spite of my refusal to even think of the numbers 8 and 13 and 55, those self same numbers even now are arranging themselves for presentation at approximately 9:35AM. The 55 is especially troublesome. It does not seem to be the hippest number at the party. No savant am I, but to me this number looks a tad lumpy and gray; if I put on my rose colored glasses it takes a somewhat more pleasing form, but still, it is far from a beauty.

Rose colored view

Rose colored view

It wasn’t always this way. I can remember a time when 8 and 13 frolicked happily with 5 paired with various other numbers. Everything was new and fresh (including my skin which let me tell you was flawless).

There were years of balloons and song, frosted confections with delicate (yet large) pink roses. There were first bicycles and first kisses and first cars. There was a green record player that coincided with one first kiss that played McArthur Park over and over again while I tended a first heart ache. A heartache that paled in comparison to the pain I felt November of that same year when I lost my father.

I learned then what I know now all to well – life doesn’t stop. At some point the pain eases and you just get up and start living again. Our thirst for life is relentless and 8 and 13 knew it way back then. We rolled on.

Soon that little party and the green record player were but a faded memory and we jumped headlong into adulthood. Just past the magic 18, no longer content with birthday cake, 8 and 13 rushed to taste wedding cake only to spend 24 as a baby divorcee, drunk for the very first time, crying at the party.

You know the song – It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to …

And I did.

Not 8 and 13 though – they were invincible. Moving on and gathering steam they decided they had no time for tears. There were degrees to get, marriages to make and babies to have. They sped through the rock n’ roll years recklessly, joyously, and filled them in equal measure with joy and heartbreak.

Like a virgin for the very first time

Like a virgin for the very first time

Young mother

Young mother

Tough as they were though, they couldn’t outrun every trouble. There were years without parties and plenty of tears and broken dreams. As the song goes “that’s life” and it sure was.

Fall from grace

Fall from grace

After a hard fall 8 and 13 partied a whole lot less but still set out a great table. The players changed but there were by now two constant companions, Eric and Jacob. It seemed only natural and right that the boys take front and center and 8 and 13 were happy to oblige. So was I.

Front and center

Front and center

Jacob on a roll

Jacob on a roll

The table is both more and less crowded now – if that makes sense. Jacob brings a family and 8 and 13 share with a certain Ev the right to party with 16. Eric is often on the run and ready to charge out the door. My first party planner is fading away, very fragile and won’t be with me and 8 and 13 later today because I am sick. So tonight’s party, much like my life, will not be what I planned, but I will celebrate getting to 55, alive and intact.

This post is dedicated to my mom, who even before dementia set in used to send me cards captioned “To my good friend” and to my sons Jacob and Eric, who when I turned 50 presented the cake that appears below. We are dysfunctional, crazy, funny, smart, kind and a family in all its messy glory. I am grateful and I am so blessed.

You're Old

You're Old

Dear internets – this birthday if you are inclined to give a gift – please consider doing so to Lisa @Clusterfook who is going through her third battle with cancer or my neighbor Gary Balogh who, as I write this, is gravely ill and awaiting a stem cell transplant for Birkett’s lymphoma.

As for me, for my birthday I want a new, shiny job with benefits – ribbon not required. If you know of an organization that needs someone with my awesome skill set, feel free to email me.


9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. mediaChick
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 00:24:14

    That’s it. I’m blogrolling you, damnit! Happy birthday, lady! ♥

    Thank you – now if you could just get me a wife or a job or a wife/husband with a job!


  2. Marilyn
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 07:12:05

    Happy Birthday!!! I need 55 to be really HOT…since it’ll be here before I know it…so looking at you as my role model. 😉 I’m lighting a candle in your honor…and wishing right along with you…for this to be a kick-*ss year. Hope it brings you everything your heart desires. xo

    Marilyn – from your mouth to G-d’s ear as we say – and I am sure with your new found freedom this year will bring all good things to you.


  3. Teena in Toronto
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 08:31:15

    Happy birthday! I hope you enjoy your day!

    Thank you for the good wishes! Enjoy your friend’s party tonight!


  4. bluesuit12
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 09:58:04

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! I’m bummed you’re not feeling well for you big day but I hope you get better soon!

    My son just made me blueberry pancakes for brunch – that made up for not feeling well …. I even felt good enough to do this dishes.


  5. Becky
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 11:36:57

    Happy birthday, lover. That cake is dead sexxy. Can I have a piece? Even if it’s just to LOOK at it?

    Okay just to look at …


  6. momomom
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 14:07:57

    8,13,55,60, just to be along and play the numbers, dear ones, it’s worth the pain and all the guilty pleasures. make sure you get to indulge in at least a thousand of them.

    Happy, happy bday. and Moses adds, save some cake for me.

    Momomom – thank you for the wonderful yesterday, the manicure, pedicure and gifts. Last night I played beauty queen with all my new cosmetics .


  7. Jo-Ellen
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 14:53:23

    Dear flawless skinned, still beautiful Judy,

    So sweet of you to think of Gary. But everyone deserves to celebrate their Big Day with presents and cakes and all that goes with the territory. Love you for the thought.

    JE – I have wanted to come visit but did not dare expose you to this virus – when I am am well and germ free we will get together to celebrate our fabulousness. Happy belated – I was thinking about you on your day – hugs to G and E.


  8. Maggie, dammit
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 15:23:33

    You know something?

    This is, quite honestly, the best birthday recap I have ever read.

    I’m doing like your first commenter — adding you to my blogroll.

    Happy Birthday, you talented thing, you.

    (p.s. I addressed and sealed and even stamped your B&N gift card today. Next stop: Mailbox! Look at me go.) 🙂

    Thank you Maggie, both for the compliment and the contest card – I think you started a winning streak for me. I hope you are having a cheese-riffic day.
    By the way in the Fall from grace photo I am wearing a U of W sweatshirt.


  9. Arjewtino
    Aug 13, 2008 @ 18:55:44

    Happy birthday to a fellow hot MOT.

    Thanks for the birthday wishes – you made my day.


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