My BIRTHMONTH IS ALMOST HERE !!!!
My actual birthday isn't until May 31st but I begin my celebration on May 1st. Well May 1st if y'all are lucky. Sometimes it's leaked into April by a day or two. I've been observing my birthmonth for years now, but I've noticed the past couple of years that more and more people are recognizing not just their birthday but their birthweek and/or their birthmonth. Is it because I started this trend?
I mean, probably.
Honestly, probably not. It's probably because it seems that in today's society
we all think we are each special and important and deserve all the attention.
We are each little special snowflakes. Is this why I celebrate my birthmonth?
It has turned into kind of a self indulgent joke. A way for my family, friends and I to take a serious situation & make it easier to swallow. Not too long out of high school I began to display strange health problems. I was in college at the time and spent alot of time in and out of doctors, specialists, and hospitals. At times I would go to classes through the week drive to Birmingham on the weekends to be admitted for testing sign out and drive 3hours back to college. Thinking about how I had to handle somethings then medically, really makes me realize how far we have come with our medical system. Sometimes (although rarely) I could get a doctor to issue a labwork order to a local doctor so I wouldn't have to drive for blood work. I even went into the university clinic to get labs drawn but before I could produce my medical order the local campus security had me restrained and handcuffed because Gomer fucking Pyle mistook my constantly bruised and needle beaten arms for drug track marks. From that point on I was too embarrassed and so made the drive every weekend. I was tested for anything and everything they could think to test for, by so many doctors and specialists that I soon lost count. They couldn't tell me what I had, only what I didn't have. Fucking helpful, I know. It was stressful, painful, scary and expensive. I began assembling my medical team of doctors. And after months and months and months of tests (routine and experimental) the only thing they were positive of was that my life span was limited. Me and my family were told I would be in a wheelchair by 25 and I "wouldn't live to see a 30th birthday".
I think my mom handled it the hardest. Everything became a potential "last memory". At this point it's probably important for you to know I HATE having my picture taken. Absolutely HATE! With all the fires of hell. But my mom felt that she need document every damn thing. We had to have cheesy ass pictures made because what if it was the last time she had a picture of the whole family? What if this was the last time you have an Christmas walking? What if this is the last time you and your brother are able to stand next to each other? What if this is your last birthday?
For the next few years as my health ebbed and flowed, my birthday became dreaded because it was one less year we were able to have together. My days were numbered and a team of extremely well educated and highly paid medical professionals had stamped me with an expiration date.
And fucking frankly I got tired of it.
VIVA LA REVOLUCIÓN!
If it was going to be be my last, I was damn well going to enjoy it. Pack as much fun, as many activities and as many parties as possible into my day. Which quickly began to spread into days, weeks and then all month. Instead of having my mom cry for days leading up to it, I started calling her on May 1st, "Its the first day of my birthmonth, tell me happy birthday! Let's go buy something frivolous & eat cake!" May 2nd, call mom.. "it's the second day of my birthmonth! Tell me happy birthday! Let's go have our nails done!" And so on and so on. When my brother & his wife had kids mom wanted me to be able to make as many memories as possible with them, in case one day it was all they had left to know me by. So I started making my whole family (and Marcy whenever possible) go with me to the zoo for my birthday weekend.
Why the zoo?Because I fucking love the zoo, that's why!
All this celebrating didn't really keep my family and friends from silently dreading my inevitable impending death but it did kind of create a way for them to deal with it. And it provided me the opportunity to instead of fearing death to celebrate life.
My body breaks down, tears up and at times absolutely was worthless. But meds and stubbornness are amazing bedfellows. 25 came and I wasn't wheelchair bound! So that birthday was a celebration! As 30 approached we celebrated harder each year because it was likely to be my last birthday. The year between 29 & 30 was like waiting any moment to fall over dead. But contrary to the expensive over paid, overly educated medical professionals I did reach the 30th birthday! And an entire group of people let out a collective breath that nobody was willing to admit we had been holding.Since then, each birthday I have has turned from a sad potentially last ever, to a celebratory 'we made it' month long party. There are days that I feel like I can barely contain the pain within me and there are days that I barely have pain. But whichever day I'm having, I have surpassed my life expectancy. And that's worth celebrating.
So when it comes to my birthday I tend to go overboard. If you know me personally or follow me on social media, I am so sorry for my dumb ass self indulgence. It helps me and mine deal with serious life issues, but that doesn't mean that we can't celebrate. I can dance so I'm going to and I want everyone I know to join in. So until we all get sick and can't stand any more let's eat cake and celebrate!
Happy Birthmonth to Me!
-golden (@theonlygolden)Ps-if you don't mind some goofy silliness please feel free to follow me on twitter for my birthmonth celebration and join in the revelry!