Birthdays

I guess, on some birthdays, we kind of just get older.

(You know, kind of a morose, Les Misérables “At the End of the Day” kind of view of it, but just not quite so desperately bad.)

SO not my usual way of spending any birthday, including my own, but that apparently was what the world put on the books for today.

It’s been an odd several months, though, and I haven’t even adjusted to the fact that it isn’t September right now, so it doesn’t much surprise me that the world was all off-kilter today, too.

Fortunately, everything was off-kilter in a very me sort of way, so good came of it all – it just wasn’t at all usual for my birthday’s activities and happenings…., but some really great and exciting things are to come in celebration of today’s event, aka my life, in the next several months and throughout the year.

I personally am really looking forward to the mid-March activity/event. 🙂

Happy Birthday, World. 🙂

Post-a-day 2019

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My birthday

It’s a special birthday for me this year.

It seems like the few people I really would love to have spend the day with me are all otherwise occupied slash unavailable on my birthday this year.

I would like to shuff this feeling of inadequacy and being unloved…, as well as the feeling of just not bothering to do anything for my birthday at all, since they can’t be part of it….

Perhaps I need just to go ahead and pity myself and have a great big, emotion-releasing cry, and get it all felt and out of my system, and then I can readdress how I want to celebrate my life this year.

It’s funny how, even at the thought of that, a miniature version just happened, and I’ve even started glimpsing ideas of things I’d like to do to celebrate life this year. 🙂

Praise God – He helps me through it all, even and especially if He is the one throwing it at me. 😛

Post-a-day 2019

Instant (Tickle Fight) Friends

In middle school, a friend of mine introduced me to a friend of hers one day, and I somehow ended up invited to that friend’s birthday party, which was, I believe, the upcoming weekend.

I knew very little about this girl, but I got her some kind of present and showed up to the party.

At the party, I knew few people, but really, really hit it off with the birthday girl – we created our own no-hands cake-eating contest (just the two of us, while everyone watched), and, because we were having such a good time together, turned the birthday party into a birthday slumber party, having girls call their parents (or check with them as they arrived originally to pick up their daughter) to request staying and having a change of clothes delivered.

During the slumber portion of the evening, when everyone was splayed across the TV room floor in sleeping bags and pallets, and the version of “When Harry Met Sally” that has the miniature interviews with old couples interspersed through the film (and therefore adds an extra hour or more to the run-time) was playing, the birthday girl and I were snuggled right next to one another.

I remember my hair being wet still, because we had also turned the party into a swimming party earlier on, and I had swum in borrowed clothes.

Anyway, she and I were watching the movie and chatting with one another off and on, when we came to the topic of being ticklish.

Neither one of us had much of any resistance to being tickled, but we both had the desire to be able to resist the way other people we knew could – mostly people with lots of siblings.

I had (and have) many siblings, so I felt like I was missing out on this special skill that people with siblings seem to have.

And so, by reasoning that it must be a matter of having been conditioned that allowed these people to resist, we agreed to test out our own conditioning.

Therefore, dozing off during the film, we both slowly and gently ran our fingers back and forth across one another’s feet bottoms (yes, the soles), so that we each could practice deep breathing and calming ourselves in the face of being tickled.

Fast forward to today, and I can tell you that our night of tickling practice paid off – most people have no idea that I am at all ticklish (this includes, of course, all the people who actually tickle me – I’m not just saying it because people don’t try or anything).

I can’t resist forever, but I still have a solid thirty seconds to a minute or so that I can resist quite well, even when the tickling is intense.

When the acrobats were hanging with us, we all had a tickle fight (because what’s the point of giving up tickle fights amongst friends, just because we’re adults?)… almost every attempt to send me into crying giggles failed, due to my power of resistance – vive la résistance! – but our fingers grew sore from jabbing at what felt like concrete or brick walls, because the extremely muscled abdomens of the acrobats were also extremely ticklish.

(This went in many different directions… now, back to my original concept with the instant friend in middle school.)

And so, years later, I still recall Sayrah, the girl who became my instant friend that one week in middle school, just about every time I consider and no-hands food-eating contest or event or when I consider my awesome skill at resisting being tickled.

***As a quick note, I totally can be tickled like crazy, and I willingly give in to it instantly when I’m in the mood for a good and deep laughing fit, but it’s nice to be able not to have those when I really just want to be a rock of calm. 😛

Anyway, I miss having that, instant friends… we even mentioned that tonight, missing the social aspect of school, where you get to be surrounded by people of similar age and intelligence at least five days a week, and friends kind of abound… adulting is tough in that respect…

Post-a-day 2019

My longest year so far

Thus ends the longest year of my life.  🙂

In my twentieth year of life, right at the end of it, I spent some time living and studying in France.  My birthday came and went while living there, effectively making my twentieth year of life shorter than any previous year – think birthday to birthday – by a full seven hours.  By the end of my twenty-first year, I had already spent several months living in the USA again, thereby making my twenty-first year seven hours longer – birthday to birthday – than the average year so far in my life (and 14 hours longer than my shortest year of life, which had been the year before it).

Last year, I found myself living half of my year (birthday to birthday year) in Japan.  Therefore, when my birthday came around in 2017, I completed my shortest year of life, its being a full 15 hours shorter than the usual (and eight hours shorter than my shortest year to that point).  Therefore, as I reach my birthday at midnight tonight, living again in the USA, I will be completing the longest year of my life – birthday to birthday, of course – with a full 15 hours more than usual (and 30 hours longer than my shortest year).

Cool, huh?

 

P.S.  Yes, of course I am excluding leap days, because they ruin the fun, and they don’t even make any sense in the first place.  A year is all about the Earth’s revolution around our sun, and a leap day is just a way to make up for the fact that it takes 365.25 (I think it’s actually 365.242189 to be exact) days to go ’round our sun, not just 365.  So, I’m just counting the approximate .25 with every year, instead of adding a whole extra day every fourth year.  Even if I did include leap days, then every leap day would cause the longest year of my life to be that year (and each of those would be equal to one another).  However, the shortest years of my life (still talking birthday to birthday) would remain the same, as they did not contain leap days.  To anyone with a birthday on February 29th – I mean you no injustice or discredit.

Post-a-day 2018

FaceTime

Today (March 5th) is my brother’s birthday.  He lives in Texas.  My dad called me tonight, as a sort of reminder about my brother’s birthday.  This is one thing I love about my dad’s side of the family – we all remind the family whenever it is someone’s birthday.  There are funny bits to this, of course, because it often means that whoever’s birthday it is gets a load of messages and phone calls all at the same time, followed by the thought of, ‘Hmm… I wonder what message just went out to everyone.’  For example, when it is my sister’s husband’s birthday, my sister sends a group text to the family, telling us that it is his birthday.  Within about five minutes, we have all either called or sent a birthday message to him.  There’s no way we all just happen to think of his birthday at the same time, so our ‘cover’ is just plain nonexistent – we were clearly reminded of the birthday.  But, the point is that we all care enough to wish the family member well on his/her birthday.  My dad, I think, is the one who started this sort of tradition we have.

Another aspect of the birthday tradition that my dad created is the song “Birthday” by the Beatles.  Every year, without fail, he finds some way to play the song for us on each of our birthdays.  One year, my eldest sister had an early-morning flight, and so expected to miss the song, since it was always played at home.  However, my dad surprised her with playing the song in the car on the way to the airport (at 6am).  When I was abroad, he would Skype or telephone me, making sure to play the song at the start of the call.

Today, as he was talking to me to remind me about my brother’s birthday, he checked the sound of the song with me, to make sure I could hear it well enough.  He said that he was planning to call my brother right after he got off the phone with me, and I saw that FaceTime had an option to add a call, so we went ahead and called my brother on FaceTime (I did, anyway), by clicking the “add call” button.  However, it ended up not working the way an “add call” button suggests it might work, so I improvised.

Right now, I’m sitting with my laptop on my lap, my phone on the lap of my laptop.  On my phone, I am FaceTime Video-ing with my brother.  On my laptop, I am FaceTime Audio-ing with my dad.  It is the middle of the night for me and the middle of the morning for my brother and dad.  The three of us are talking as though we’re all just hanging out together.  Right now, of course, the two of them are having a bit of their own chatting time, and I am typing.  This points to what is possibly my favorite part of this: I, in Japan, am joining two people on a phone call, who are barely an hour or two apart from one another in Texas.  I’m not even talking right now, but the whole reason they are able to talk to one another is because of me, over here in Japan.  So, it’s kind of like their conversation is taking the long way around… the Really long way.

Or something like that, anyway.  😛

 

Post-a-day 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birthday

Today was/is (depending on where one is in the world right now) my birthday.  Thank you to my mother and to my father for having and making me.

Now, people at school totally forgot about my birthday, and that’s okay.  A friend was even giving me a hard time about details for an upcoming trip while I was in the middle of my birthday lunch at a nice little Nepalese restaurant, and that’s okay, too.  I wasn’t looking too forward to all of that.

I have been working on my mental and physical health lately, and one part of that has been going to my gym more often.  Instead of once or twice or zero times a week, and only for, perhaps, an hour, I have been going more like five to ten hours a week, attending all sorts of fun classes (boxing to ballet, angels training [a misleading name for the crazy-hard workout that comes with it] to yoga [yes, normal yoga]).  The gym is all women, and we all have to have nicknames, so as to create a close-knit space (instead of the formality of Japanese culture and always using last names), so it makes for a really great environment.

That being said, I was really looking forward to getting to my gym today.  Dinner with a friend was something great on the list, too, but the gym had the extra excitement of helping out my physical health while I enjoyed its being my birthday.

I knew that some of the ladies knew that today was my birthday, and so I was excited to be going somewhere where I could feel the love, so to speak, for my birthday.  Just after I walked in the front door, the lady at the desk wished me a tentative English, “Happy Birthday…?”  A huge grin and verbal thanks assured her of the success of her endeavor.

As I was changing for class, I heard some English being practiced in the common area, “How old are you?”  So, I suspected I was about to be asked this question when I got into class a few minutes later.

What I did not expect, however, was to walk into my step class of older Japanese ladies, and for them to break into song, singing me “Happy Birthday”.  And in English!  I actually started tearing up a bit, it was so wonderful.  If I had been hoping for some welcoming love here, I certainly found it, I found myself thinking.  Essentially, it was perfect.

After class, a number of people kept wishing me a happy birthday and talking to me about this and that.  Before the next class began (yoga), I made a point to interrupt the delighted chatter of the older ladies from step class, and to thank them especially for their singing and well-wishes.  And I did it all in Japanese, and successfully.  They were just so wonderful.

And then they all started asking me how to say the name of a bicycle that has a motor attached to it.  Amidst all the Japanese, I declared that I’d have to do some research, because I could only think of electric bicycle and motorized bicycle.  

But that’s not quite the point.  The point is, I suppose, that step class is amazing – you could do yourself quite well by joining one wholeheartedly today.  🙂

Also, all of my thanks to all who played a part in my coming to be.  🙂

Happy Birthday to me.  Watch out, World!  😀
Post-a-day 2017