Okay so let’s be honest, as a morbidly obese person, birthdays meant one thing to me; cake. Okay two things; cake & presents. Now growing up in a religious household where Birthdays and Holidays were not celebrated I can honestly tell you that I’ve never had a real birthday party, growing up I got sneaky birthday presents on the sly from my Grandmother until she passed away when I was eight, and later in High School my friends started celebrating my birthday with me, but never in the form of a big party or anything like that and into my adult years I always celebrated my birthday with my significant other at the time. In fact, most of my really good birthdays can be attributed to Tom and Jason.
I remember when I was turning thirty and having a little bit of a midlife crisis over it. Jason and I were at the prime of our relationship, we had just started renting a house instead of an apartment, a house we thought we were going to buy until life started changing and we decided to go to Las Vegas. My thirtieth birthday was a weekend full of Vegas excitement. Drinks, black jack, a Nickelback concert at Mandalay Bay, Phantom of the Opera at the Venetian, shopping and just a bunch of excitement and fun. That’s one of my fondest birthdays.
My father’s passing last year was extremely hard for me on my birthday; it wasn’t any easier this year either. Last year was the first year I could remember since my parents strayed away from the religious beliefs when I had left home that my Father’s voice hadn’t greeted me on the other side of the phone for my birthday singing to me. This year that hit even closer to home for me, I missed his singing to me more than I realized and it was the first year in a long time that nobody actually sang Happy Birthday to me.
That doesn’t mean my birthday was bad… it was just different and different isn’t really a bad thing, sometimes change is good and ok, just a little hard to adjust too.
Last year, as my “Birthday Cake” I had a three pack of little mini hostess 100 calorie cupcakes that I didn’t even eat all of and didn’t feel deprived in the slightest.
This year definitely wasn’t about cake or presents for me, it was about spending time with my chosen Family and enjoying them.
I spent a good deal of time the night before my birthday talking to Tom on the phone about things going on in my life and all that. We talked about my goals, we talked about the things I need to do next, we talked about my recently Family drama and he let me rant and vent and of course, Tom gave me a birthday present. If there is one person I always know is going to remember my birthday its Tom. This year’s gift was so thoughtful. After the last year and half with me since my Father passed away and all my sudden concerns about not having things in my life in order the way they should be at my age and regretting not knowing more in my twenties about investing money instead of pissing it away, his gift to me was shares in a Gold Mine, a way to help me start learning about stocks and shares and understanding investment. It was a very thoughtful gift, and as always shows that Tom is one of the few people that really listen to what I am saying when I express where I am emotionally.
My actual birthday fell on a Tuesday, which meant most people were working. I spent the majority of the day with my best girlfriend ever, Heather and we had a really fun little day together, lunch at our favorite little Mexican place, then we went to see the Movie Paranorman, which we both feel asleep during but hey, the parts we saw were cute and funny. Then we went and got me and manicure and pedicure at a new nail salon. I loved this! Getting my nails done has always been one of those things I did that made me feel pampered and pretty. For some reason even at 420lbs I could convince myself that I looked nice when my nails and make up were all done up. This was the first time ever in a nail salon that I didn’t get acrylics put on my nails and instead just had my own nails and toes painted. I tried that new shellac gel paint stuff that is supposed to not chip and last for weeks on your fingernails and so far I love it. After my nails we headed to Jamba Juice where I got one of their Light ( No Sugar Added ) smoothies made with fresh fruit and Splenda and added in the Whey Protein boost before we headed over to Fry’s for some window shopping, a bunch of “I wish I could afford that, and that, and that and that too!” and finally we ended up at McMenamins for drinks and appetizers with my dear friend, Trainer and someday-to-be business partner, Suzie and her best friend Jennifer. We had a great time hearing all about their recent trip to Vegas and talking, yip yapping. I had to laugh though, going out with Suzie I should have known what to expect but Heather and I had ordered their Ale Tasters platter which is pretty much deli sliced meats, cheeses, olives, pickled veggies and a few little crisp wonton like things that I let Heather go to down on. Great post WLS friendly platter for sure. Of course Suzie rolls up an orders her and Jennifer the humus plate, which was basically humus, flat bread, olives, pickled veggies and humus, replace my meat with her pita bread and my cheese for her humus and we had the same plate! Suzie surprised me by picking up the tab for my birthday and as usual humbled me with her kindness and generosity.
I had meant to stop at Fred Meyer and pick up some of those cupcakes again, but then I opted for a Sugar Free Chocolate Cupcake from the local sugar free bakery here in Portland that Fred Meyer’s stocks in their bakery department. But I was so full after lunch, the movie theater and the appetizers that I totally forgot the whole cupcake thing. My evening sweet ended up being a Luna protein bar and a container of No Sugar Added Tapioca Pudding. My usual sweet tooth cures, because yes, about a year and half or so after my gastric bypass that sweet tooth of mine kicked back in only now I feed it with fresh fruit, sugar free treats.
It was an eventful fun and pampering day, all courtesy of Heather, and I had the promise of Birthday celebration day #2 to come tomorrow to do the rest of the things I wanted to do but didn’t have the stamina and energy for all in one day because of my recent skin removal surgery and all. So yesterday, the day after my birthday, we headed out for lunch at one of my three favorite eating out places, Macaroni Grill. Some time I’ll tell you all about my love for this restaurant and their light calorie options and tips on things to try there. After lunch we walked over to Lu Lu Lemon, an athletic store that I’m just DYING to shop at AFTER I’ve finished all my surgeries and can afford to start refurnishing my closet with stuff a little higher in price than what outlet stores, target and goodwill, since they won’t keep ending up too big for me after and having to be donated. Heather bought me one of those no slip grip head band things I’ve been wanting for when I can get back in the gym, purple and black of course. Then we headed over to the Jewelry store to look at Pandora charms. My Pandora bracelets (I have two) were both started around this time last year and are something that both Jason and Heather ended up getting me, I love them of course because my nickname is Pandora. We didn’t take anything home because the salesman informed us that they had a special starting up in a couple weeks where if you spend $100 you get a free bracelet. Since most the charms are about $40-$60 a piece that is easy to do if you are buying a couple charms so we decided to wait, get me the free new bracelet which will allow me to build a new bracelet later when mine are full. Then we hit Fred Meyer for that Sugar Free Cupcake I forgot to get the night before. I’ve got a cute little picture of me blowing out the candle on it that Heather lit for me, and I’ll admit I decided to splurge and eat the entire thing, after all it was sugar free and my birthday, why not celebrate a little…. Yeah it made me dump. Won’t do that again! Next year its sugar free frozen yogurt with a couple sugar free Oreo cookies crumbled on top and a candle stuffed in the yogurt, or some homemade cupcakes so I know it won’t make me sick. I really wish cooking was more of a strong point for me but it’s not something I’m really passionate about. I suck in the kitchen, heck I’ve tried to make the protein ice cream that Shelly from The World According to Eggface makes several times and have ended up messing it up so many times I gave up. It’s ridiculous.
My birthday, considering all that is going on in my life right now and where I am emotionally, was restful, stress free and filled with people that are supportive, loving and encouraging me to keep doing the things I need to do right now, which largely means continuing to focus on myself and my goals. My birthday was about celebrating me and the people that love me, it was awesome. A few neat presents thrown in, a shirt and headband from Heather, gold mind shares from Tom, drinks and snacks from Suzie. Oh and of course calls from my BFFs Tora and Ashli! Ashli was actually the first person to call me and wish me happy birthday the morning of my birthday, I love that girl, she is totally my “Titty Sprinkles.” And if you are offended by me saying that, or don’t know what it means, do yourself a favor… watch this video:
I’ll leave you with that and a thank you and shout out to everyone that wished me Happy Birthday on Facebook when it reminded you it was my birthday! 😀
“Mmmmmm that’s the good stuff.”