Celebrate my Life

Thursday, July 18, 2013
Today's my birthday. I'm forty-mphyisgh today.

But this isn't me fishing for well-wishes and prezzies. Quite the opposite, in fact.

As I've gotten older, I've found myself spending less and less of my personal energy on not only my own birthday, but the birthdays of those I care about.

I know that some people feel that celebrating birthdays is important because it acknowledges the importance of an individual's existence. That's defensible, I guess, but from my perspective there is no inherent virtue in having been born. If anyone deserves a present on the anniversary of a birth it's the mother. After all, she's the one who went through labor, and breast-feeding, and ALL THOSE THOUSANDS OF DIAPERS. ZOMGWTFBBQ, THE DIAPERS. I didn't do shit except make a mess. So thanks, Mom!

So instead I've taken to celebrating people because they're fucking awesome and I love them. Do I think you need a giant metal chicken in your life? UPS is on its way! Do I see you have a special accomplishment that requires acknowledgement? 1-800-FLOWERS is on its way! Do I see some special something that just screams at me that it must be owned by you or do I recognize that you need a bit of extra help right now? IT'S ON ITS WAY.

Acknowledging people in this way makes me furiously happy. It gives me a chance to celebrate the people I've invited into my life when I feel inspired to do so, not on some relatively arbitrary day.

Being forced to acknowledge someone's birthday because "that's just what you do" makes me feel icky. Because that's not what I do. I think what I do is better, more satisfying, more spontaneous, more indicative of my love. I want to celebrate the lives of the people I care for. And I want them to celebrate mine.

13 comments:

Michelle K said...

Happy BIIIIIIIRTHDAAAAAY DEAR JANIEEEEEECE!

I love you!

Stacey said...

I thoroughly enjoy that you are so thoughtful. I will celebrate that we have spent another year in each others' company. I love you my sistah!

David said...

Happy birthday to you!

Anne C. said...

Count me in on the appreciation that you are so thoughtful, in many ways. You are thoughtful in the traditional sense (you listen and identify opportunities to help), and you are thought-full in the literal sense (you think about things in your life and yourself and evaluate them based on your experience and information to date, and act upon it).

You are wonderful!

Happy birthday, my dear friend and sister.

Thorvaldr said...

Furiously happy is so, so good.

Phiala said...

You are AMAZING. I want to be like you when I grow up.

Happy birthday, my friend!

Eric said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Megan said...

hb2u
hb2u
hbdj
hb2u

Shawn Powers said...

Happy Birthday! I'm going to celebrate your special day by getting older myself tomorrow!

As to the post? Yeah, your way is much better. :)

Anonymous said...

Scot said...
You proved your words this week by your donation. Thank you for being awesome! oh yeah, and HB2U (can't resist)

Janiece said...

Thanks, all, and also: You're embarrassing me.

Also again: Scot's a big softie. :-)

Steve Buchheit said...

I'm going to post happy birthday, anyway. Because I like celebrating that there are excellent people in the world.

Carol Elaine said...

You are one of the best people I know, Janiece, and as such, you should have one of the best birthdays ever, with each future birthday more amazing than the last.

Love!