Turning 30 years old

Why my birthday is the most important day of the year

March 2, 2020

Today is my thirtieth birthday. A big 3-0! Three decades of living. Ye ol' dirty thirty. 

I must be getting old, because normally I spend my birthday being a spoiled brat, but today I've done nothing but work so far! It's ok though, I have a big birthday party planned for this weekend and I'm excited.

I'm not sure what it is about birthday's but it's the only sort of "holiday" that I truly look forward to and enjoy celebrating. I hardly think that makes me a narcissist and here's why.

Growing up I didn't really have many friends. I was pretty introverted for the first half of my life. I enjoyed my own space and doing my own thing without having to share that space with another individual. Maybe it had something to do with sharing a doorless bedroom with two other brothers. I was the top bunk so that was pretty cool, though.

One year I had a birthday and my parents said I could invite a few classmates to an arcade. So I picked about 6-8 of my favorite classmates, but only one person showed up. I remember feeling a bit embarrassed by it. 

Shortly after my parents moved us around a little bit here and there, forcing me to go through the unfortunate nature of having to make new friends every year. High school sucked and if you didn't have friends by then, it was pretty hard to make them. At this point in my life I wasn't an introvert by choice so the idea of inviting friends to a birthday party was pretty non-existent. 

Some people claim they "have no friends", but really mean they just don't have a lot of them. When I say I have no friends, I really meant it during that time. 

By the time I graduated high school, I started to meet some people. I got invited to some parties and suddenly I found a place in some social circles. This is also when I made a transition to a more extroverted personality. 

Feeling a little confident, I tried planning a couple of birthday parties during that time, but like I experienced in 4th grade, only a couple of people showed up. So I gave up on the idea.

Fast forward a few years later, without even letting them know it was my birthday, a few of my friends pushed me to do something to celebrate. I agreed to maybe doing a dinner or something and I was pleasantly surprised to see quite a few people show up. 

So the next year I did the same and even more people showed up. People who I didn't think even really cared. 

Last year I had a dinner celebration of about 20 people followed by a party with almost 50-60 people. I had friends drive and fly miles for the occasion. It has now become a famous event people talk about for months after.

It's now an important occasion. Symbolic in a way. I was once at the bottom with nothing. I kept my head high and pushed through, filtering out the bullies, the fake friends and went out of my way to make impacts on peoples lives. Always do the right thing, no matter what. After 12 years of making friends in multiple cities, seeing them all come together in one place, on one day (despite it being my birthday) completely melts my heart.

I don't want gifts, I want to see people I've hand selected over the years come together and interact with each other. And then I want us all to let loose, have some drinks and make complete fools of ourselves on the dance floor. 

I'm not celebrating my birthday, I'm celebrating my life and all the people I am grateful for. 

So here's to you guys. Thank you for being in my life and getting me through those tough times. Reminding me each year that I am loved and valued.

I love you!

(wal•do) — Person
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