I've never really been a person who makes a huge deal about my birthday. I think the date of my birth, December 26th, is pretty unique. But as for people who absolutely have to invite 70 people to their house and have a huge bash for every single birthday, that's not the type of person I am.
I think that's why, a few weeks ago when I turned 21, it wasn't really that big of a deal to me.
With every birthday, the day of, I feel exactly the same. Maybe in a few months, I'll feel different but for now, there's really no difference in 20 and 21. It's just another birthday. I'm just another year closer to dying.
Yes, I feel exactly the same. No, I do not just by osmosis gain a ton more knowledge when the clock strikes midnight on my birthday.
Some people make a week out of their birthday. Since mine is the day after Christmas, I think Jesus claimed most of the week, so that's not really possible. Also, it's just one day for a reason, you shouldn't need a whole week to make yourself feel special, or at least I don't.
So, the whole pomp and circumstance that surrounds being 21, to me, is a bit ridiculous; that I have to go out wearing some unreasonably attention-grabbing outfit, a sash or a sign, and some sort of tiara to denote that I've just turned 21.
And then the going out is supposed to be a whole scene, sometimes involving a limo and a very large group of friends shuffling you from restaurant to bar to restaurant to bar telling random strangers that it's your birthday as they couldn't tell that from your ridiculous clothing.
Instead of a huge mess like that, where one friend is bound to get lost, I was at home. I had some cake, I had a glass of wine, I was at home and I went to bed just like I normally do. It wasn't a production. It was just a day to mark that, yes you are older and remember that you were born.
Even as a kid, I never really had birthday parties because of when my birthday falls. But even if my birthday was on a normal day of the year, I don't know if it would make me want to have a birthday party anyway.
I am always so excited to sleep and not be around people that a birthday party, centered around me, where I have to be a good host and check on everyone and make sure everything is clean but still be seen and the life of the party seems like so much unneeded pressure.
So, if you're not planning a huge rager for your 21st birthday, that's completely fine! If you don't want to invite every person within a five-mile radius to your home just so your birthday party looks well attended by Instagram standards, you certainly don't have to. I promise it's still totally acceptable to just go see a movie, buy yourself a new outfit, have one drink or go out to a small intimate dinner.
I think as a society, we expect and even push that everyone should have so much fun on their birthday, especially their 21st. It should be a wild night to remember or maybe even don't remember. It teaches us that we have to be seen and heard on our birthdays. But if you're not someone who wants that all the other days of the year, why would you want that on your birthday?
Birthdays are literally a day about you, so if you want that day to be normal or your version of fun that differs from the societal definition of 21st birthday type of fun, then so be it.