birthday letters (1)

After eight years, you get a little blasé about sharing birthday time with your spouse. Our birthdays aren't on the same day, exactly; just four days apart, but in a sequence that amused both our families to no end when they first realized a sequence existed. First Jeff's, then two days later his sister Lori's, and then two days later my birthday rounds out the series.

Sequence. Order. All slapping into place with a neat little snick, the sound of a previously-undiscovered hole in your life filling up.

For him: a book of linux server hacks. For me, a pair of sharpenable sewing scissors. Little things. For better or for worse, we're not the kind of people to make large productions out of birthdays.

But what about the cats, you ask? Yes, in a pathetic and amusing quirk of birth and fate, this house is truly and fully the House of Libra; after we adopted the six-week-old baby furbeasts, we counted back and realized that the cats were born in the gap between Jeff's birthday and mine. Therefore, the brothers Fang will be four this weekend.

I've explained to Fang that they are no longer kittens, and should conduct themselves with the appropriate degree of decorum expected from adult cats. The response? Tenzing immediately went back to sleep. Edmund rolled onto his back in an attempt to convince me to rub his belly.

Luckily, I think this means Fang (either one!) will forgive us for a distinct lack of birthday cakes for the felines.

* * * * *

I always said that turning thirty wouldn't bother me, and I've still got a couple of years left before I'll find out if I was lying through my teeth the entire time, but I know that the prospect of #27 has bothered me more than any other birthday I can remember. I chalk it up to the realization that thirty is closer than twenty.

I think such a thought and then, very quietly in a darker mental corner, a little part of me whispers, "what's the difference between thirty and twenty, anyway? I don't feel different..."

Then I catch myself and realize that yes, I do feel different. I know how to get a marriage license, prepare a tax return, make a counter-offer on a house, and how to make funeral arrangements for a parent. Announcements from friends have shifted from collegiate plans to wedding plans to childbearing plans.

I still don't like it when I'm called "ma'am" in a store by cashiers who obviously aren't old enough to vote, but I think it's kinda funny that I occasionally still get carded when I want to buy a bottle of wine, even though it's rather obvious that twenty-one passed me by a little while back.

I've noticed that two-toed crows take up residence by the corners of my eyes when I smile now. Strangely enough, I like them. They're smile lines. When I rub my eyes after a long day, the skin under my eyes feels equal amounts soft and ... fragile, a word I never would have used in conjunction with me a decade ago.

If there's a difference, I think I'd say it's the difference between the perception of invincibility and a raw understanding of human fragility.

* * * * *

Meanwhile, in the House of Libra, Tenzing sleeps on my desk. He has forgiven us for our foray into south Huntsville for a birthday dinner, where we traded weekend plans between bites of each other's food.

Thursday was his day. Monday is mine.

My favorite photo of Tenzing as a kitten.  Brad said he had SETI ears.  He was right.Flickr

My favorite photo of Edmund as a kitten.  Before he got all ginormous, that is.Flickr


Take it from someone that has moved past 30 at the speed of light and is closing in fast on 35...the more you try and fight the fact that you are aging the quicker it catches up with you. I stopped caring about my physical age when I turned 29 and started caring about my mental age which hopefully will be forever stuck at about 18...11 if I am in the Disney Complex. Don't sweat getting older...just roll with the punches and accept the fact that Father Time doesn't care what you think...he has to keep dropping grains of sand until the end of time.

You're making me feel old. (Not because of anything you said about yourself, but because of the pictures of Tenz and Edmund!)

I no longer celebrate "birthdays." I celebrate the "aniversary of my 29th birthday and no I'm not saying WHICH aniversary." Of course, after this past one, I don't think anyone else is recognizing that date at all (dirty glance at spouse).

Well Jody & I are in the same boat - 35 is creeping up fast. Some days I don't feel much older than 15 (especially on Tuesday when I got Duran Duran tix!). Don't sweat 30 - it's just another number :) Happy birthday to all four of you!

Thirty didn't bother me at all - I've had a much better time in my 30s than I ever did in my 20s. But I'm starting to dread the big 3-5 coming up in a few months...

To Amy ... age is relative. I feel young every day secure in the fact that my wife is always going to be older than me. :) To Suzan, my dear & loving spouse ... why, pray tell, are you operating under the assumption that I don't remember the anniversary of your 29th birthday? I know it got overshadowed by my brother's wedding this year, so it didn't feel like a super-mega-party. If you like, I can buy you an extra box of hair dye next year to make up for it. And before you plan to kill me, I did fix your e-mail problem this morning. Not bad for a youngster.

I came here to ' to learn about skinning, oh sometime ago ... I stuck around because the skins were so inspiring. Now I think maybe I should come for the interesting blogposts.

Y'all are funny. :) jowilson - I forget sometimes that indeedy, you knew us well before we had the furbeasts. Indeed, you knew both Jeff and me before those names equated to an "us." (Damn, but you've been around a while, boy!) Suzan and Brian - you guys crack me up. Brian, Suzan so owns you. *heh* Panya - welcome! Every now and then, I hear of someone saying exactly what you did. Most everyone around here knows each other, so just step up and join the fray. Occasionally there's yelling, but mostly there's a lot of cat-taunting.

*suckered. registers.*

What are you talking about? I don't know any of you people. You all smell! I hit 25 beginning of the month ... crap, now I have to be responsible. Le sigh.