Happy Birthday (Blues) to Me


Welcome to March. Who is ready for CHANGE?

Bring it on! I am ready for longer days, warmer temperatures, budding trees, and early flowers. But, that also means sloppy puddles, sticky mud, and debris left behind under the melting snow. And don’t forget the layer of grime and grit built up along the streets that once prepared us for seasonal driving. 

As I sit here with my mini bucket of mint chocolate ice cream, I am hustling to finish this paper of last-minute edits. The middle school show choir is wrapping up, and another fantastic youth basketball season is about to end. Mid-month brings St. Patricks Day with good eats, drinks, and fun. Then comes spring break with my kids, road trips, and photo ops that come from nowhere. Like the years before, March 20th brings us the first spring day, just one day before my birthday, to be followed by my brothers three days later.

Milestones Matter, but why?

Another birthday- uugghh.

This year doesn’t feel as bad as the last; I guess turning 46 doesn’t have the same impact as those milestone birthdays such as 30, 40, 45, etc. My hardest by far was when I turned thirty. I felt like I was losing something, a piece of myself, unlike when I turned ages such as 18 and better yet 21, which felt empowering.

What was once a day of fun, excitement and anticipation has now become a little less of each. 

March carries a lot of weight, sadness, and heartbreak for me. Since turning thirty in 2006, life and family have been chaotic! We have lived in five places after losing our home to the flood of 2008 and adding four daughters over ten years (now a big family of nine!) So many accomplishments have impacted me and our family in a way that keeps our lives moving forward, but not without trial.

So with that said, you would think that a mom with seven daughters would never long for anything but a sense of self, satisfaction, gratitude. 

And yet, here I am searching.

Birthday Blues are Real

Happy Birthday (Blues) to MeI am not sure what it is about birthdays that some people, such as myself, can’t get past, but my mind seems to come up with plenty. I guess I have what’s known as Birthday Blues or Birthday Depression: “A general sadness or feeling down by a person on or around his or her birthday.”

Maybe it is the undeniable aging process -an image of graying hair, wrinkles and worry lines, saggy and crepy skin. Perhaps it’s a much deeper internal issue such as the thought of “middle age” or fear of the mid-life crisis. It could be fear of losing those we love, or maybe ourselves. Or it’s a realization of time and how it seems to speed up with every passing year.

I have so many things that I feel are mine to do, finish, discover, and accomplish. It is a never-ending list in no particular order. I want to see my children grow and live beautiful lives, enjoy some quality time with my husband, relax together, and enjoy the life we have built. But there are some things, such as our family tree, which will continue for many more lifetimes. As a family historian, I feel such a deep connection and passion, so unfinished business is hard to get past.

Only one life, so let us get back to living it!

I want to fight off the birthday blues and celebrate the life in front of me rather than missing one that I’ve never experienced. This year is the year I can, and I will try to recapture my special day!

Goodbye birthday blues, let’s celebrate! Here are things you (and I) can do:

  • Start the day with something positive to lift your spirit.
  • Celebrate in comfort. (Dinner in or dinner out, with or without the kids.)
  • Don’t stress out with exuberant plans or plans at all. (Let someone else take the lead)
  • Lower the bar on expectations, relax and enjoy as it happens.
  • Smile, cry, and laugh your way through the day because tomorrow it will be a memory.
Happier birthday to you, whether it is this month or another. Make it the best by celebrating yourself!

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