I am not having my annual birthday bash this year and for one simple reason…I’m tired. I have been planning events my entire life. As a youngster I had the awesome parents that would let me have a party. At age 10-12 ish I had a boy girl party complete with snacks and dancing to my new 45’s. As I aged out I had drinking parties with my high school friends and lived life on the edge, edge of a big fat 2 x 4 but an edge nonetheless. Into my career I planned varsity fundraisers for the U of Calgary Dinosaur Varsity teams. At this time I added my annual birthday bash to the mix. Once I started my own foundation I started running different events. The marquee event, Burpees for Breath and the golf tournament. Every year since I was 20 I have planned an elaborate party of some kind for a cause, a club, or myself. My birthdays became themed events as did my big gala’s. This just piled on the work. Most times it has been rewarding and fun to plan but this year, something changed. I felt alone,even though I was not alone. I felt like I was pulling teeth to garner some support. I got more no’s to help than I did yes’s. If it wasn’t for a small crew of my friends and family the gala itself would have fallen apart.
Why am I feeling this way? I don’t really know. I am usually the one helping people out and giving them opportunities and helping pay a bill or whatever it is. I think that, even though I know most people appreciate my presence in the world, I was feeling taken for granted. I don’t need constant validation, far from it but I do wish for some acknowledgement of some kind for what I do. I invested my entire life savings to help a friend reach his dreams, not my dreams, his dreams. I emotionally and physically supported a friend who lied to me for 4 years and I work tirelessly for free for my own cause for 20 years and still there is no cure. Don’t get me wrong, I know I am helping the next generation of CF kids, I just wish I could help myself as well. It’s that give and take deal. When people start taking too much then I must stop giving because there is a fine line in helping someone and sacrificing myself and my happiness.
Once in awhile a friend or family member will surprise me with a delivery of chocolate covered strawberries or a fun gift basket because I am locked in my house due to smoke, or a neighbour will make me jello because I caught a cold, or a gym member will come and take my dog for a walk while I was in hospital. All these things are amazing boosts to my soul. So to all of you who spoil me like that, know that I am beyond grateful. Oh and I LOVE getting mail. I used to send b-day cards to everyone and I still do to a select few and I also send Easter, thanksgiving and Christmas cards as well. I love sending them out. I might add a cute pic of Cali or some stickers for the kid let’s.
Ok,back to my point. Yes, I am feeling taken for granted. I am feeling a bit sad. So because of feeling this way I didn’t want to spend all the money and time into another birthday bash for myself. It is hypocritical of me of course, because I tell everyone to celebrate their day like its going to be the last, that’s never truer than for someone with CF, but this year I am giving myself a gift and doing nothing. I will celebrate with California,mom and dad at a quaint campground. My only request is my most favourite dessert in the whole world- confetti angel food cake with blue or pink 7-minute frosting and maybe a gift or 2. I love me some presents. That will NEVER change. I hope I don’t sound ungrateful. I am. I have many special people in my life that are very happy I was born. It’s just this year has been a tough one on me emotionally for a number of reasons and I just don’t have the will to throw the party.
So to those of you wondering where the invite has gone, it’s gone nowhere. I haven’t left you off my esteemed list of guests, I’ve just decided to not do one this year and maybe not until my 50th if I am blessed to live that long,
If you want to show me some love please feel free to mail me a birthday card, like I said, I LOVE mail. I have a huge box in my basement full of birthday cards for the last 3 decades. I go through them and see all the wonderful people in my life. It lifts me up. I am a simple girl with pretty simple needs with the exception of new lungs. A text telling me I mean something to someone, a note saying thank you, a bag of ketchup chips and grape slurpee goes a long way with me. I know I am loved its just nice to feel it sometimes.