The Best Birthday

Yesterday was my birthday, and I must admit that I was terrified about turning 24. I know, you’re thinking “24? Seriously? Are you going to have your mid-life crisis at 30?” The answer – yes, seriously, and no… I’ll just be continuing my quarter-life crisis… if only in my head.

Despite this terror at reaching my mid-twenties (which is terrifying because, umm… there are people married with children at this age… and people that have traveled the globe… and fought in wars… and me? Well, I once worked in a porn store.That’s the most exciting thing I’ve done yet), I had a great birthday yesterday.  My best birthdays have been my 16th and 21st, and while 24 didn’t involve an awesome parties like those did, it was full of happy surprises.

First, I woke up to the smell of sausage. Which is odd. Until I opened my eyes and saw the Mr. sitting on the bed holding a tray of breakfast! In bed! For me! Complete with oatmeal, fruit salad, herb sausage, and coffee. That’s never happened to me before! I was shocked and ecstatic.

I then got ready and went off to my internship, which was bleh. I was only there a few hours, but soon got a call from a delivery person standing outside my apartment. He was dropping off an Edible Arrangement! My landlord luckily answered the door while I was on the phone quizzing the guy about what it looked like and who it was from. I didn’t find out the latter, and was left the rest of the afternoon pondering (it turned out to be from my amazing parents).

After getting back from the internship, I plopped down on the couch to relax with a magazine. I was in the living room for, oh, an hour or so. Then the Mr. called to update me on when he’d get home. And mid-“Well, why don’t you just…”, I looked up. And this is what I saw:

Over the pictures we’d hung in the living room were pictures of some of my closest friends from Missouri, giving homemade messages of birthday love. Including one from my favorite canine, that said “I ruff you”.

It was cute, yes… but that’s not what got me. What got me is that in this crisis-mode I’ve adopted lately, with all the upheaval of moving across the country and the uncertainty of my master’s degree and my job situation, I suddenly had my friends with me. They had come all the way to Philly for my birthday. If hearts could melt, mine would have instantly.

The friends I made in Missouri were a special type; I felt so comfortable, joyful, and confident around them, a feeling I’ve only ever felt with the Mr. Its not easy to find people that you can see constantly and never get sick of, or people that you feel like you can be yourself, 100%, and they’ll appreciate it for whatever follies committed in the process. But also people that truly challenge you intellectually, with whom you can carry on a fascinating conversation for hours, then easily switch to the silly or mundane. And I was surrounded by these types of people. They changed my life for the better, and I’ll never be the same. They are each unique, and I will always love them for who THEY are as well.

It was so simple, just a few e-mails sent out by the Mr. and a couple of cameras, and yet it was the best present I’ve ever gotten. He said he knew how much it meant to me. I don’t think he could possibly comprehend how much it meant to me.

We then finished off the evening in center city at a lovely BYOB restaurant. Just us. It was, without a doubt, the best birthday I’ve had.

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One thought on “The Best Birthday

  1. Yea for awesome birthdays! We are so glad that you had a great one, Ariel. Don’t feel weird – I also felt that 24 was some kind of scary number. I’m rather terrified of turning 27 next year! It was such a great idea of Paul’s, and we are so glad that we got to be in your house in some form on your birthday. We really do “ruff” you!!!
    Love,
    Jayme, Jonathan, J.J., and Zoie

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