I know… shut up about my birthday. [Which is tomorrow, by the way! I know, shut up, Sandra.]
The year was 2009. Just like this year, I was turning 29. I was still at my previous job then and as always, cake was provided. It was the same ‘trick’ every year [which never worked on anyone]. Everybody but me would gather in the conference room. [Well, those I worked directly with or were my friends and probably a few who just wanted cake.] I’d get a phone call from one of them, usually my manager. “I’m in a meeting… we need you to come in.” As though I didn’t see the exodus of many co-workers less than five minutes earlier…
When I arrived home that evening, like most nights, I bitched about making dinner and then made it. Ate dinner. Dinner over. John brought the dishes to the kitchen. A cake or something had to be hiding somewhere. Hell, I don’t care about gifts but I want my birthday cake, dammit!
Alas, he returned empty handed and promptly retreated to his not-really-a-man-cave to work on some project.
And no, I didn’t tell him. I waited for him to remember. Which he finally did. Ten days later. On Father’s Day. Which I [on behalf of my children, then 4 and 1] did not forget.
I really didn’t make a big deal out of it at the time. Sure, he knew I was pretty fucking irritated, but that was it. My kids were so young… I didn’t have the time or energy to make a big deal out of much of anything.
But you’re damn right I keep this in my pocket to pull it out whenever necessary. Or whenever the hell I feel like it. Believe me… he hasn’t forgotten since.
And neither have I. As ridiculous as I’ve been this week mentioning my birthday so often, it’s really a defense mechanism. Just trying to make myself happy. [True, in whatever way you choose to interpret that.]
Every year part of me hopes for something unexpected on my birthday. Not some fancy gift or anything like that. But maybe not just John sneaking (not sneaking) out in the morning to grab my favorite coffee and ‘locally famous’ breakfast treat. It’s sweet and all, but it’s the same every year. No thought involved.
I know this is awful, but I overheard him talking to my daughter earlier tonight asking if she wanted to go with him in the morning. She said yes and asked him if there was going to be a cake later [that’s my girl]… and he said no. I mean, sure breakfast will include plenty of unhealthy deliciousness with cake-like nutritional value (you know, none). But it’s my fucking birthday.
Last year, I made my own cake. It was delicious.