So I’m 23. Yay. I feel like 23 will be a good year. It started out well enough. I feel like my birthday lasted a week because of all the wonderful wishes and nice thing all my friends and family have done. My week-long birthday festival just ended with my bike getting stolen which seemed to be the brick on top of a wonderful sundae. I’m trying to stay optimistic but I can’t help but think the world is punishing me for being happy and having a good time. Karma doesn’t really work like that but sometimes it just feels like that is how life operates.
Birthdays can be depressing. For me, it’s not about getting older because I don’t mind being that age I am and not looking the age I should be, which seems to vary between being mistaken for really young like 13 or older like 30. Either way, that doesn’t bother me. I look forward to being an old lady with a bunch of cats that yells at children to either “get off my yarn” or “get off my stoop”. I will regale the children of the neighborhood about the old days when I saw Radiohead in concert and I was at ACL before it was taken over by MTV etc. And of course, I want to be the creepy old lady that cusses and talks about sex and makes everyone around feel uncomfortable. Oh to be old. The only reason I get sad is because birthdays are markers of a year. I can safely say that most people can think back and know what they did for most birthdays. It is an arbitrary day to mark a year by but it serves its function. So for me on my birthday, I think about everything I wanted to accomplish in a year and look back and usually get disappointed because I didn’t do what I had hoped. Now that I am well on my way to being an adult, I have learned to have lower expectations of myself so not to get depressed on my birthday. I don’t really suggest this to anyone.
This year was the first year in my entire life that I wasn’t excited about my birthday on the days leading up to it. Usually I get really excited and I start counting down and telling everyone in a one mile perimeter of me that it is going to be my birthday in X days and Y hours. Not getting excited about my birthday also made me sad. Am I getting too old to be excited for my birthday? Again, I don’t mind growing up, I just don’t want to lose the ability to have fun. Yes, there aren’t any more pizza parties at the Roller Cade or at home costume parties with bobbing for apples and pin the eye on the monster. I’m not going to wake up and have my mom surprise me with a new outfit on the table (which is probably now for the best because our tastes have evolved). I feel like part of the reason birthdays were fun when we were younger was because there were people around us to help us get pumped up about it. Maybe the only reason I looked forward to it is because my mom did too? I guess I just was around enough people get me pumped about it. Don’t get me wrong though, my friends rock and they were totally there for me on my birthday celebrations.
One of the things I actually like about myself is that I am still idealistic and I have hope. Every real adult I see and talk to doesn’t. They are jaded and watch primetime television and stress about money. Granted, I stress about money but I haven’t had it make me hard yet. And that is what I’m scared of. Sure, I can be cynical, believe you me. However, with all my doubt of the world I still maintain a ray of hope that somehow even though everything is basically fucked that good comes from it and it won’t be like this forever. That’s what keeps me young because that’s what children do, they look at thing with hope. People think that just because you are optimistic about certain things, politics or the government for example, that you are naive which isn’t true. I understand how awful things are and when I focus on that I get pretty down. So I counteract the awefulness of the world I chose to focus on the good things it has to offer. I have hope that things will work out for the best and good guys will prevail. I’m a believer in happy endings. But it gets hard and that’s when I know I’m getting older. I had a pair of rose colored glasses in high school but I lost them and I’ve been looking for a pair to replace them ever since.
The “23 Enigma” is the Discordian belief that all events are connected to the number 23, given enough ingenuity on the part of the interpreter. 23 is considered either lucky, unlucky, sinister, sacred or strange (WIKI). Now I never saw the movie, The Number 23 with Jim Carry but I imagine it was an all right movie talking about just this stuff. I’m not sure how much of that stuff I believe but I do think there are self fulfilling prophesy in that if you think that the number 23 is everything then you are going to look for it everywhere and make some special kind of meaning that is important to you. It is this idea that I’m hoping to use in my life. I feel like 23 is going to be a good year so it will. Easy as that. Yes my bike got stolen and yes I’m super stressed with school but life is still good. My mom thinks the month of September is unlucky because of a huge coincidence most of our family members have died in the month of September. Every year when September roles around my mom tells me to look out and stay safe and I try to point out that it’s all in her head and of course she’ll find more bad stuff about it. Now I know it is inevitable that we all become our parents (better versions of course) and I look forward to becoming my mother but I hope that my hang ups aren’t that extreme to dread an entire month of the year. Is this what adults think? Does all logic about normal things go out the door when buy a house, be responsible, have children and circum to being an adult?
It’s going to be a good year. Everything is great. The number 23 is awesome (the actual number, I haven’t seen the movie so I can’t say one way or the other about it) and the age isn’t bad either. I am going to try and maintain my youthful outlook on life while still learning about how the world works. When October 29th roles around next year I won’t be disappointed.
Thanks to everyone that came out for my birthday celebrations and thanks for everyone for sending me your birthday wishes.
I’ve got nothing but love for all of you.