High Maintenance

I’m off tomorrow on a bit of vacation. This is our annual family Birthday Weekend wherein we celebrate my birthday, my Aunt Karen’s birthday and Stepdad Dave’s birthday.

Here’s a pic from our Birthday Weekend at Jackson Lake Lodge in Wyoming a couple of years ago. It’s always a fun party, as you can see. This year we’ll be hitting coastal Oregon.

Stand by for pics. Maybe even from the new camera.

Hopefully I’m not overpromising there.

This is always a fun time of year for me, the days leading up to my birthday. I’m a Leo and I just revel in being showered with love and attention. I know – it’s really shallow of me. But, yes, I love presents and flowers and good wishes. I actually don’t care what the presents are – anything at all is fabulous. Give me kiss, hand me a chocolate bar and I’m happy.

I realize this is fairly high-maintenance, but I do try to notify people up front. It’s like a warning label on a new purchase. Please Note: Requires annual infusions of attentions and silly gifts. Will not be responsible for any breakdowns that may ensue if this maintenance lapses.

I’m lucky in that the people who love me know this and treat me well. The Universe is generally pretty good about treating me well, also. I’m showered with blessings. It often feels like I get special blessings in the week leading up to my birthday. I was contacted by the editor of my first book a few days before my birthday. We moved to Santa Fe at this time. The weather is a blaze of glory, flowers bloom everywhere.

But last night someone backed into my car.

Yes, my pretty car.

Oh, it’s not that bad – some dents and scrapes. It’s just a thing and not a big deal.


This is *not* a part of the birthday program!

Yeah, I’m feeling a little petulant today. I’d like to stamp my little foot and throw a fit. I’d like to shake my tiny fist at the sky and demand better treatment than this.

And then I read about Kevin Morrissey’s suicide. I feel like I know something about him, because I’m familiar with the Virginia Quarterly Review and with the world of literary publishing. I know what it’s like to work in an environment like that. For him, every day the Universe seemed to rain down more curses, driving him deeper into desperation. His world wasn’t full of sunshine and late-summer flowers.

I suppose it’s human nature to get buried in our own angst. We think we have to have this thing to make everything else right. I stamp my foot, I shake my fist. He called Human Resources umpteen times.

But in the end, no one can give us the thing that makes us happy. We’re ultimately responsible for our own maintenance. Despite the bullies of the world. Despite a Universe that distributes blessings and curses with random generosity.

We decide.

8 Replies to “High Maintenance”

  1. Three cheers for birthday mayhem!

    I'll remind the lizard to give you lots of little kisses on your very special day.

  2. We may decide, but others can certainly contribute.

    Happy Birthday to you and your whole crew. Also to Mystress Myn, who I hear is blessed with the same anniversary.

  3. Heh, thanks Kev! 🙂

    Although I'm afraid I'm not doing anything special for my birthday at all. Alas. I will have to live vicariously through Jeffe.

  4. Happy early birthday! Today was my official due date, and some say I've been late ever since. Many good (and some not so good) things have happened on the 19ths of months over the years. My best present will be a webcam so I can Skype with my recently-departed-for-college eldest son.

  5. Thanks Elizabeth, Kev and Joan! Happy birthdays back to my bday twins, Joan and Mynfel.

    And excellent point, Kev. They contribute whether we want them to or not…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *