As a child I had a framed print hanging in my room which was given to my parents on the occasion of my birth. It had my name at the top, and below, it listed facts and comments on the day and date of my birth. It included historical references to June 3rd in history, as well as facts about that particular day, June 3rd 1986. I remember reading it often, noting the cost change in gallons of gas or milk, or the popularity of khaki pants. My mom called me recently, having just removed it from my bedroom after all of these years. As she had read through it once again we were surprised for the first time by this passage, “Astrologers call you a Gemini, they say you are quick-witted, sophisticated, restless.” Now I’m not one to buy into astrology, but those of you who know me well cannot deny the validity of that statement.
In many ways, that statement wasn’t true of me twenty years ago, perhaps even ten. But today, as I turn twenty seven, that seems to me like a valid description, simple yet concise.
This year on my birthday I was struck by how vastly different my life is than the idea I once had in my head. The future
I had cooked up for myself in countless hours of playing dress up and house is hardly a shadow of the life I live, the person I am.
Just over three years ago I cried at the closing on the day I bought my house. I was so upset, sad, disgusted that I was doing this alone. I felt lonely, unloved, stagnant. I was scared that sixty years later my ammonia soaked body would be removed from my house. That my seventy cats would make the morning news, and my married, fulfilled friends would be calling the SPCA, adopting them for gifts for their grandchildren and other loved ones. I would be dead but somehow still embarrassed at the fact that I was alone. “She was such a pretty girl once” they all would say, as surprised as I at my lifelong singleness.
Just three years later, I have accepted an offer on my house. And, as I prepare for the closing, likely in mid-August, I am saddened at the thought of leaving this home which has represented a growth of independence and self confidence in me, in just three short years. I am anxious to move on, to see what I can conquer next, to see how I will grow and change in my next adventure. One with only one cat.
Birthdays have a way of making us reflect, and this year was no different. I spent the week leading up to my birthday and the few days since, evaluating my life; where I am, who I am, who is here with me. In the end, all I could come up with is that I am one seriously lucky and happy girl. My life has all of the things you could want; people, joy, challenge, comfort. While it doesn’t have the things I expected it to by this time, it is so full of things I never imagined. My six year old self expected to be a wife and mother at twenty seven, but she had no idea how fulfilling a great job can be, how powerful independence is, how valuable close friends are. I think maybe she had it all wrong, for me at least.
I spent my actual birthday at work, and as I sat rocking a tiny baby, new with everything ahead of him, I felt so lucky that in the twenty seven years since I was where he is, I have been on the journey I have taken. I wouldn’t change a single thing. And I can’t wait to see what happens next. Thank you for being here with me.
I am quick witted
I am sophisticated
I am restless.