happy birthday to me: a post on birthdays

My name is Alex, it's 3:12 am, and today is my 17th birthday. Being one of the youngest students in my class, I have looked forward to this day ever since my junior year started a year ago, but now that it has come, I don't feel any different. I shouldn't be surprised though, because I never feel any different on my birthday. I'm sure everyone will ask me "How does it feel to be 17?" today, and I'll answer to every one of them, "Feels the same as 16," and then shrug or something. But to be honest, even though I don't feel any different today, I'm sure I will in a couple of months when my life starts to get serious. Senior year is a big year and I'm sure I'll look back at my 16-year-old self on graduation day and think: Wow I've changed. But until then I'm just going to enjoy the moment and share some things about birthdays that I love and some things about birthdays that I could really do without.

Things I Love About Birthdays:
1. Cake (especially chocolate cake with chocolate icing. hey, what can I say? I love chocolate.)
2. Presents. I love getting presents and seeing how well people know me. It's sort of like a test of friendship (;
3. The love you feel from your family and friends. It doesn't get any better than this, folks.
4. Getting older! I love getting older because it means I've lived another year and because it reminds me that I have so much more to experience in life.
5. Celebrations. Whether it be a huge party or a small dinner with friends, the fact that people are coming together because of me makes me feel pretty special.

Things About Birthdays I Could Do Without:
1. Awkward phone calls from family members whom you barely speak to.
"Hey, happy birthday!"
-awkward silence because you have nothing to talk about-
2. Facebook notifications. 99% of the people writing on my wall don't actually care about my birthday, so...
3. Standing awkwardly while everyone sings Happy Birthday. No matter how hard I try to make it not awkward, it's still awkward.
4. Opening gifts I don't like in front of people. I know that it's the thought that counts, and I really appreciate the fact that people go out of their way to buy me gifts for my birthday, but I'm absolutely horrible at hiding the fact that I don't like a gift. You can immediately tell from the look on my face whether or not I like a gift, so I really don't like opening them in front of people. Saves everyone a lot of awkward.
5. The classic: "I can't believe you're -insert age here-! I remember when you were this big!" I never know what to say to this so my default reaction is an awkward smile, a shrug, and a nervous laugh. Works every time.

I'm sure there are more things I could add to each list, but I honestly can't think of anything else at the moment. Oh well. I hope you enjoyed this post and to anyone else celebrating their birthday today, Happy Birthday!

<3 Alex

Photo by Indea

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