I hate to admit it, but it’s true. Time gets to you, especially when that day every year, also known as “birth day”.
I’m not sure when this transition occurred. The changing thoughts in my mind on every year’s birthday is suddenly/slowly changing (see I’m not sure which one).
I’ll tell you what I mean.
As a kid (9 and under): I think I know everything there is to know, colors of all things I see, calculating how much change I should give to cashier, when I go to bed, why I have to eat veggies…. That birthday is the most amazing day in the world. It’s the one day where everyone gives me gifts and I can have all the friends I want with me all at the same time. It is my excuse for anything that I want to get out of: no bedtime, cake instead of veggies, open gifts, and anything that my parents would usually say no for turns into a yes (just for that day). It’s one of those days that you’re just waiting for all the other 364 days for, because it is or has the potential to be the best day.
As a teenager (10-17): I either cared about everything or I cared about nothing. It was black and white. Reality is starting to kick in and things are not as “magical” as it once used to be. But there’s adventure every where, rides in amusement parks, movie hopping or see rated R movies, learning how to drive, preparing for college. It’s the beginning of reality check mixed with high hopes and curiosity. Birthdays are still fun, but it’s a different kind of excitement that comes along. It’s slightly toned down, yet we still want it to about us.
As a college student (18-22): The curiosity, independence, breath of freedom molds us into all shapes and sizes and finally we’re on the path to discovering who we truly are. Not what parents expects of us or what the “cool kids” thinks, it was whomever we wanted to become. We find out that time is precious and it goes by too fast, there are things such as financial aid and finding jobs, and people balancing on ropes outside and being hungry at 4 am, and how much we need/don’t need sleep. Birthdays are now a time to spend with friends and family, for relaxing and taking a break. The town/city/state/country is getting boring, so we must travel to other cities/states/countries to create new memories and experiences to make our birthdays memorable.
In the age of post-college (22+): birthdays are a reminder that I’m getting old and time doesn’t wait. Whether we accomplished everything we dreamed of, on the road to getting there, or just knowing we’re on the track that leads to somewhere, each year becomes a a year that’s gone by too fast. We imagined finding a job and getting married used to be so distant or even nonexistent, now it is that time already. Do I want to think about when it will be like at 30s?
People say all the time that we need to live in the present, enjoying the moment right now. It makes so much sense, and yet, when my next birthday comes along, I want to think back to this past year not as one that passed too fast and nothing much happened, but an awesome year that passed too fast because we’ve accomplished so much.