Juggling life through a bi-polar lens. Sometimes up, sometimes down. Mostly trying to tread water in the middle. Creating a likeness to a normal life. Whatever "normal" is...

Saturday, 10 November 2007

How to survive your 40th birthday

Birthday cards: they make me smile whenever I look at them.

Being a supply teacher, my partner didn't know whether he would be home or not for my birthday. Sure enough, he got a call the evening before. Never mind. Once you get past your 21st, you get used to being on your own on your birthday. Once you get past your 30th, you start preferring it that way. Once you get past your 39th, you sort of hope that it won't happen at all...

So off he went to work, leaving me to have a lie-in, one ear on the radio, one ear on the letterbox. Despite both, I slept for another few hours.

Then I did the girly bath thing- run the water deep and just warm enough, pour in the remnants of ALL the bottles of bubbles and oils that you've accumulated over the last three Christmasses and birthdays, fix a huge cup of tea and set a pile of chocolate biscuits at arm's length, and bring in the radio on a mile-long extension lead. It takes some setting up, but it's worth it.

A long, long soak with several hot top ups later..... soft pink slippered and dressing gowned thing floats downstairs stinking of lavender/rose/nutmeg/strange green oil of Ulay mixture.

Alas. No cards or letters on doormat. Sigh. Check outside... oooo! Two parcels! -Cards and presents from my partner's parents (suprise) and one of my brothers (miracle).

I've a total of £30 tucked inside cards, so I spend the afternoon in town. I keep looking at things that would suit other people. What so-and-so would just LOVE for Christmas... oooh I should get this for.... No! I have to reel myself in and tell me NO! Today it's for ME! I'm buying something special for ME!

I often come home from shopping with 'nearly gots'. My partner asks me how I got on and the list starts; I saw a nice skirt and I nearly got it, but (insert excuse), or I nearly got a new jumper, it was only £5. "Why didn't you get it then?" he says. Oh, didn't really need it. I've got a jumper. And so on. I'm good on nearly-gots, I am.

But this time I'm determined. I buy a watch that I saw and admired last year. I've liked it for a year, so it's safe to buy it. A certain bear has put a photo of it on his blog.

In the evening, a minor headache: make-up. Don't normally wear it. I have large, open pores on some of my face and make-up just sits in them. From a distance it all looks perfectly flawless, as they say on the adverts. But up close it looks like the surface of the moon. I go through the usual process of putting it on, taking it off, putting it on, oh, maybe if I just take SOME of it off, no, take it all off, put some back on again.... and so on, till my cheeks are so red I don't need any colour on them anyway.

Off we go, for a meal in town. We've been there before and it was good..... and it is again. I get the wrong starter, my partner's salad doesn't turn up, but the deserts are magnificent, just like last time, and that's what counts!!! Then I decide to have some alcohol. I'm not really allowed, not with my medication. But hey, just one yummy drink, just for today.

"Irish Coffee? Oh, we would, but we're out of cream, sorry. Would you like something different?"
I think, "That WAS my different. I normally have tea!" But think better of ordering anthing else. Maybe it's a sign I shouldn't drink after all. Hey ho. Off we go home.

Change into baggy jumper and jogging bottoms.
Chocolates. Tea. Telly. Both fall asleep on the sofa.
Trip upstairs. Snuggle into bed, on our new 'memory foam' mattress topper. Ahhhhhhh..... a few pages of PD James and away I go, asleep....

It might not sound like much, but I had a very, very happy birthday.


Lynda (Granny K) said...

So glad you enjoyed your birthday, despite a few minor set-backs. Love the watch!

Hope all goes well for Fluffy. Keeping everything crossed for you (and Fluffy).

Hugs, Lynda

Helena said...

Thanks, Lynda! I'm up late cos I can't sleep for worrying about her! D'oh! Can't wait to get there and hold her!

Chalkhills Collective said...

Sounds like a great birthday. I had mine on my own this year because partner had to work. I love it, a whole day doing my own stuff!

Thinking about you and Fluffy on Monday.


Anonymous said...

When I turned 40 my Mom secretly invited all my friends and family to the house in Massachusetts. I was totally surprised because most of my friends were from at least 150 miles away and had never been to the house.

Turns out Mom had nicked my private phone book for the invites. Thank goodness she didn't invite any of my ex's or anyone who had fallen out of favors!