The thing about Birthdays

Welcome to my therapy session…With the exception of the boys-grand babies, every birthday that comes and goes, I feel a little lost….not because of everyone being a year older but birthday celebrations created by my mother are missing! I wish I could ask her why birthdays and holiday celebrations were so important to her and why she knocked herself out making everything special. Always a meal of favorite foods, a birthday cake and presents. When it came to him and the girls, I always felt she was stacking more work on me because I had to think and let her know, for each birthday, what I thought they would want the most! I, now, understand what that “burden” represented to me in our dysfunctional relationship! Was this the way she showed us love or was she playing out through us what she missed out on as a child because her mother died when she was still a child? As the matriarch of our family, have I dropped the ball? After my mother died and my girls moved around, I stopped feeling the need to make everyone’s birthday a national family holiday….does anyone else miss it? This is making me tear up and that’s how I know I must recognize the memories for what they are which is a destructive thought pattern of the past lubed up with feelings and emotions that are in the past. And the only reason they are bothering me today is because I’m not centered and I’m allowing these thoughts and emotions to appear as a reality now instead of living right here, right now…

I’m so thankful to my mentors….and it takes a chorus of them….to teach me….or perhaps learn with me…how to live our best life today…. This post all happened because I wished the husband Happy Birthday this morning! No celebration today because our Des Moines kids drove down yesterday to surprise him and we all did dinner together at his restaurant choice. It was fun! There was love! In my heart I realize that’s all that is important!

Until next time….

7 thoughts on “The thing about Birthdays

  1. Smaller, more intimate and joyous events would seem an improvement over big productions. Ever read “The Five Love Languages?” Some people are more moved by having things done for them, others are moved by affectionate touch or words, etc. A giant party to one person might hit the spot and be meaningful. To another person, it is only a narcissistic parent that would put on such a big show that means nothing to that recipient. There is no one size that fits all.

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  2. And when the parties are for adults, I think the birthday person adult needs to speak up. Craig likes less of a party. Last year I needed more. If people have a preference they need to speak up and say this is what I want. I am a big proponent of just putting it out there.

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  3. I think every family does things differently and you have to work out what works for you and your family. Growing up in a family of 5 kids and 2 parents and having three of those birthdays in December some of our (mine) birthdays got lost in the hub bub. We try to do one party for each person. A party will include a favorite meal which often means pizza. A favorite dessert and presents. We don’t have extra people just immediate family. Although when the kids were little we did a party with the cousins and aunts and uncles, in addition to the immediate family party. I think everyone has to find what works for their situation. Some people don’t like big get togethers. But last year I made it known to Craig that I really needed something more than our usual because I was severely depressed. I think you do what works for your family.

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  4. I think sometimes people make giant birthday celebrations so that they can be seen as the person who makes the effort, rather than through any sense of love or joy.
    I think you let people know all the time how much you love them and how much joy they give to you.
    I miss big celebrations though. 🙂

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