And to everyone else celebrating their birthday today!
When I was a kid, I loved celebrating my birthday. I think I still have an old home movie of one birthday party where we played “Pin the Tail on the Donkey.” I remember the dizzy feeling after being spun around and the annoyance at being way off on where I stuck the donkey’s tail. And presents. I loved getting presents. It reinforced my little kid ego. I was the center of attention and who doesn’t like that at that age?
My worst birthday was when I turned 25. I was in grad school. I was cranky and the day passed without much fanfare.
30 was great; a surprise party at a local restaurant. I was blindfolded on the drive to the restaurant. That was almost as dizzying as being spun in circles to play a birthday game. I still have my “Youth Fairy’s 30th Birthday Wand.”
And now in my 40’s, I find myself once again relishing birthdays like I did as a kid. I don’t care about getting presents (really, what more do I need?) I simply enjoy the day, whether spent with friends, family, or quietly on my own. In fact, I think I’ve enjoyed my 40th decade the most.
Apparently, October 7, 1963 was on a Monday. I was born mid-morning. I always use that as my excuse for not being an early-riser. I am reminded of this nursery rhyme:
Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace,
Wednesday’s child is full of woe,
Thursday’s child has far to go.
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for a living,
But the child born on the Sabbath Day,
Is fair and wise and good in every way.
The number 7 has widespread significance. It is the number of days in a week and the number of traditional planets in astrology. In Christianity, it is the number of virtues. In Judaism, it represents creation, the planets and the seven heavens. In Buddhism it also represents seven heavens. For the Chinese it represents the seven stars of Ursa Major. And Native Americans associate the number seven with the Dream of Life.
I expect today to be pretty low-key. A visit with a friend. Maybe yoga class tonight. A phone call from my mom, who usually sings “Happy Birthday” to me over the phone. On Saturday we’ll celebrate with a visit to the ICA for the Charles Ledray exhibit and dinner in the North End.