Speaking of Birthdays

Melissa, I remember my thirtieth birthday.

I woke up that morning with a mission. There would be no tears – I would accept that I was no longer 20 something. I planned to be gracious and mature.

There are some days that just don’t follow the rules

The celebration began early with kisses and hugs and lovely presents wrapped so beautifully. The hubby is one of those guys (of whom there are a few) that can go shopping and purchase presents that a girl really likes. In addition he buys cards and wrapping paper and ribbons. He measures, cuts, folds, and tapes as nicely as if a professional had prepared it.

After breakfast the festive boxes were set before me and I felt like a princess. (Albeit, a thirty year-old one.)

I’m sure he cringed when I tore the ribbon and papers to bits - just like I always did. What I’m sure he didn’t expect was to see my face fall after opening the first gift.

It was a silk blouse with long sleeves and button down collar in the perfect color for my season. Just like any woman’s eyes would do, mine scanned the neckline for the sewn in name label and size tag.

My body was just 5 months recovered from giving birth to baby number three. Physically I was like a rubber band that had been snapped one too many times. When she was just 10 weeks old, I went back to work wearing another woman’s clothes. Well, they were mine. It was only that before this baby I was another woman.

The pre-pregnancy size garment was held in front of my horrified face knowing the tears were close. The man must have gone into my closet and looked at the sizes hanging in there that I hoped to fit into again.

I opened the next one, and the next one, and the next one. All beautiful clothes, perfect in color and style. This man knew his woman. Everything but her size!

Tears. Of course. Then questions.

From him: What’s wrong? Don’t you like them? Are they the wrong color?

From me: Are you trying to tell me I need to lose weight? Didn’t you know I can’t fit into this size anymore?

From him: You can take them back and exchange them for a larger size.

From me: Boo hoo hooo. Then run away and hides in the bathroom with a cold washcloth on my face.

The day wasn’t over.

We had lunch with friends John and Janet. I’m sure it was fine because I don’t remember anything about it.

I do recall silently ruminating the events of the morning and the contents of the boxes sitting in my bedroom. That’s probably why I suggested to Janet that we take a walk after eating. She agreed.

With her dog on a leash and my baby snuggled into my back carrier, we strolled down the road towards the park.

We were two blocks away when a vehicle approaching from behind started honking, causing us to turn in response. The pick up truck passenger, hanging out the window, flung the contents of a 32 oz paper cup over the three of us.

My immediate concern was the unknown substance that was on my baby. Janet wisely turned and repeated the license plate out loud. Our noses almost immediately identified the liquid. Beer.

John was hot when we got home with our lamentations. He prepared to go make mince meat of someone’s face. I admit that I was ready to watch him do it. Fortunately, the hubby was (and is) the level headed one.

The police caught up with the inebriated men inside the truck owner’s house. He was a driver for a local beer distributor. The other was on the ballot in the upcoming election for county fire commissioner.

Neither drunk was cited, only given a written warning (for whatever that is worth). The passenger, the one in the election, wrote me a personal letter of apology that indicated he could be a third grade drop out.

What a day! Hormonal weeping over clothes nice enough for a smaller princess and being christened to set sail into my thirties… not with champagne, but with stinkin’ beer.

I woke up that morning with a mission. I wanted to be gracious and mature, but I wasn’t.

In the meantime, however, I’ve had hundreds of birthdays to make up for it.

PS. I know someone may want to know.

The hubby, who was at the time the hunkiest firefighter on the force, took the letter and passed it around at the local IAFF (firefighter’s union) meeting. It was at this meeting that they determined who the Union would support for fire commissioner in the upcoming election. It was the hubby's way of driving by and throwing the contents of his cup.


Whippersnapper said…
Funny you should write this today. I went grocery shopping this morning in my maternity pants (keep in mind, the baby is almost ten months old now) and have been feeling crappy about it all day.

I think having beer thrown on you from a moving vehicle means good luck in some cultures... !
Willowtree said…
I don't know what it is about the 30th birthday, but I remember mine had a more profound effect on me than either my 40th or my 50th. And it wasn't because of bad memories or anything, it just seemed that I had actually become an adult.

PS. What is it with those brain dead morons who throw things at people!?
marnie said…
Pamela, I may need this reposted for April 19th...

... it will be my three-oh day.

Gattina said…
I don't even remember my 3Oth birthday ! It was July, and hot and I was pregnant and prepared the stuff for the baby to come in August. No idea what I did that day ! But then I had weight problems the other way around ! I lost quite a lot of weight during my pregnancy, while the boy was very nice, lol, and floated then in my clothes ! My gyneco told me that I am doing everything not as a "normal" woman.
Jeanette said…
Hi Pamela. Oh ive had a lot of birthdays since turning 30.
I had 4 children and the youngest was 2 months old when i turned 30 so was just another day in my lifewe seem to celebrate 40, 50,60.and so on here, so had a few celebrations and a couple more years till next.
Robin said…
(note to self...Marnie's 30th is April 19th, repeat...)

Oh.....Pamela, I sooo feel your 30-year-old birthday angst! The good thing is (there's a good thing?), you really told this story...wonderfully. I could "see" it as a I read (and I was HORRIFIED about the "christening" :/).

When I was NINE MONTHS PREGNANT (my birthday is the end of March, Stephen was born April 7th), Tad had his mother pick up an outfit he liked for my birthday...I opened it...and it was a size FOUR! A freakin' size FOUR! I DIED! What was he thinking? I asked his mom and she said she had TRIED to talk him into a gift certificate so I could go shopping "later".

The lucky thing is...it was a LARGE size four and I was able to wear it...eventually. Then I loved it. You gotta love fitting into that size no matter when....
BarnGoddess said…
your husband sounds like a very smart and cool guy! heheh

throwing beer on women w/ a baby? that is LOW DOWN.

Turning 30 was super hard for me too. Why is 30 so hard? leaving the fun and roaring 20's I guess. Maybe its a sign of having to grow up? I dont know.
Karmyn said…
Next time tell the story about your 40th birthday. That is when I about died of embarrassment.

(I remember the beer incident - but since I was only 10 years old it didn't mean much to me. Now I totally fEEL your pain.)
Pamela said…
whipper: yeah I need maternity pants, too. And it's been decades.

WT: when we turn 21 its like getting out of jail. 30 is going back, I think.

Marnie: You look so 16.

Gattina: If I didn't love you so much I'd hate you.

Jeanette: When young grow wild oats. When old..grow sage (sigh)

Robin: Size 4. Thats just a toddler.

BarnGoddess: Yeah. I trained him. grin

Karmyn. It was my 39th and that's why it was such a suprise somewhere I have pictures
Susie said…
My 30th birthday seems like so long ago! I remember things that happened that year, but not the birthday itself. That beer throwing incident sounds like it all ended up just the way it should as far as the election went!
Amanda said…
Someone threw beer on me?? Well, that certainly explains a lot, doesn't it?
Biker Betty said…
I don't remember my 30th birthday, it had to of gone without a hitch. What a day you had. Sorry it didn't turn out better. I love how your hubby dealed with that guy. Good for him and what a creep that guy was.
Pamela said…
Susie. Denial I think. I don't remember my 40th or 50th.

Amanda: in restrospect, we should have had him arrested for contributing to the delinquincy of a minor

Betty: You would have remembered it if you'd been riding that day
kailani said…
I can't believe that guy threw beer at the three of you! Who throws beer on a baby? I would like to think I'd handle it as well as you guys did but I don't think I would have.
Pass The Torch said…
Oh - what a rotten Birthday memory! I buy myself things now -- that way I always get just what I want;)

I can't imagine what my husband would have done with the moron. Oh man... That wouldn't have been pretty.

But, this doesn't mean it's your birthday today, does it?

Sometimes you're sneaky like that;)
Pamela said…
Kailani: The fellows were drunk "six sheets" according to the sheriff.

Kelly: No. My b-day was in October.
Melissa was feeling kind of blue because her 30th is coming up this week. It brought back my memory of that weird birthday.
Tammy said…
Pamela...this was so wonderfully written...even if the birthday itself wasn't so wonderful.

When I turned 30, I hadn't even found my prince charming yet...so I had that whole thing going against me, instead of the post-baby body.

But I've been there with the post-baby sizes, too...in fact, four years after my last one, I still am! ;)

Such a great post!
rose said…
Pamela Sure enjoy your blogg I can't get on there anymore but you just get gooder all the time keep up the good work Rose
Melissa said…
Pamela, thank you for this. I'm glad I came a little later to see all these comments. I am trying hard to keep my composure as Thursday approaches. My dad called me today and said, "aren't you happy? 30 was GREAT for me!" And I didn't want to burst his bubble or whatever he was having so I just said, "oh, yeah." Glad to know I'm not entirely nutty for feeling this way.
Pamela said…
Tammy: Well, you just got to enjoy that tight tummy alot longer than some of us.

Rose: We've got to get you back into your blog!!! I'm glad you're still reading along tho!

Melissa: Hang in there beautiful.
Anonymous said…
what a jerk ivy

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