1. I Was Never Made To Appreciate My Birthday
The only birthday wish I received was from Google.
When I connected to the internet and opened the Google homepage, the word Google was written in colourful pastries with candles on them. When I moved my cursor on the pastries it read "Happy Birthday, Sakhile Padi".
I always thought that birthdays were overrated, but seeing that birthday wish from Google made me feel acknowledged but lonely. I do not tell people about my birthday, I cannot. I know people who tell the whole world about their birthday months before it happens, I am not one of those people. I have close people in my life that I always wish happy birthday. I do not need Facebook to remind me. I changed the settings on my Facebook page to see if there are any people who genuinely give a damn about the day that I was born and.... just one former friend. We have sort of drifted apart but we never forget each other's birthday. It was her and Google, they are the only two people who care that I was born, well one person and a system generated birthday wish from the cyber world.
We never celebrated birthdays when I was growing up. My mother was a single mom and was struggling to feed us let alone buy cake for birthdays, however, what hurt me the most was how she never even bothered to actually wish me a happy birthday. No hug, no kiss... nothing. No Sweet Sixteen, no eighteenth birthday and no 21st birthday. I stopped expecting anything. My birthday became just another day. As an adult I have made an effort to celebrate some birthdays, even though I could not celebrate on the actual day, I wanted to celebrate myself. Jumping off a 100 metre cooling tower, sky diving, food market. This year I was not in the mood, it was going to be just another day and I would not mind... but, I do mind.
Birthdays evoke painful memories and emotions for me, memories of feeling unloved, as if I have no right to want to be celebrated, even when I celebrate them it is as if I am trying to numb the pain; it feels forced, fake and unnatural. I cannot celebrate my birthday completely and I feel a slight sadness and loneliness when I don't. The 7th of June has become a day that I wish I could make disappear.
Happy Birthday to me.