Thirty-Six Big Ones

It’s my birthday. My parents tell the story surrounding my birth every year. It was traumatic, however, my dad especially is always so happy to tell it. How could the “there is something wrong with the baby” be a joyful thing to hear? It doesn’t matter, now. He’s got his baby, his little girl, his princess and his only daughter. Until my daughter was born I was easily his favorite person in the world. I’ve done nothing to deserve that, ever, but he is a gift to me.

A Gift that gave me a mop the last time he was here.

My daughter is at school right now. I dropped her off and she shouted, “Happy Birthday!” to me. She’s his number one. If she was home, my seven year old would help me get things ready. I feel like I need her and I don’t feel 100% good about that. She is supposed to need me and I’m to do my best to guide her towards God by soothing her and meeting those needs. She is the most wonderful person in the world and the most wonderful thing I’ve ever created.

Thirty-five is a magic number. It hit me hard and I never really thought about why until this year. About five years ago I was told I needed to be done having children. Every health care professional (That sounds so pretentious) told me not to. I accepted this with many tears and misery. I wanted more, I was greedy for children and I was told this is it. I’ve only in the past few months realized that I was about 85% cool about having “only” one child. I had things to do for God and myself that I couldn’t do with the large brood I had dreamed of.

Last year I was thirty-five. Thirty-five is the magic “birth-defect” (is there are better word for that?) age. For someone with the liabilities I already have, it’s considered a high big bad idea. Of course I could have ignored medical advice and had a baby before. Or now, I could do it now, if I found someone without a vasectomy who wanted to. I do not consider that a viable option. Add the meds potential side effects and those that come with age, things are compounded. It’s really the end of the line.

Part of me is actually joyful about this. I get what I get and I don’t throw a fit. When Small asks for a brother or sister, with all her promises to take care of her and learn to change diapers, I don’t cry anymore. I don’t think all the lavish affection and gifts showered on her are ridiculous, even if they are excessive. She must need all of this to grow in to the woman God created her to be. Even though she is adored by her parents and both sets of grandparents she asks for more praise. “I didn’t do a good job” on things she she terrific jobs. “I sang so badly” all this crazy self-criticism. I meet her need. I know what it is like to NOT get the praise you want and need thanks to the jackasses I dated. To be fair, not every one I dated was a jackass, it’s just that, in a small pool, a noted number of the men were jackasses.

Birthday party tonight! It’s grown up – a small number of people with six types of Torani Syrup. Catered food and I don’t know what else is in store. I will enjoy the party. I love giving myself parties. And now, I must work on the house.

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