I posted a picture of my 13th birthday self on Facebook today with a comment that it was 31 birthdays ago. It boggles my mind that I can refer to events of 30+ years ago that happened while I was already a sentient human being, instead of a diaper-wearing larva. As anyone who’s ever waited for me (which is pretty much anyone who knows me) can tell you, I really have no comprehension of the passage of time, in small or large increments. I cannot wrap my head around it in any meaningful way; I just agree to try to abide by consensual reality to a semi-successful degree so that I can live in amicable society with other people, but if I had my druthers, my clock would be the sun alone, and that’d be good enough for me. And I wouldn’t get up until lunch o’clock every day.
But I digress.
Scott and I had dinner with my folks and my friend, Pam, last night as an early birthday celebration, and my mom made my favorite cake (Black Forest). In a nod to fire safety, no doubt, she got those numeral-shaped candles instead of putting 44 individual candles on the cake.
Which I appreciated, as I’ve been a little like Frankenstein’s monster in regards to significant amounts of fire near my person since I set my kitchen on fire. (I didn’t realize that I had a touch of the ol’ PTSD until my dad’s birthday in July, which was the last one we had in our family, and I carried his cake out to him, candles ablaze, while secretly attempting to quell the panic that unexpectedly arose. Generally, joy, not panic, is my primary emotion when cake is imminent.)
My mom put the candles on the cake and turned away to find the lighter, and my dad said, “I think you got them reversed.” My mother gave him a “ha, ha, very funny” look which seemed to indicate that she didn’t find it very funny at all, in fact. And because I am my father’s daughter, I laughed and laughed. So far, that moment is the best thing about being 44.