Pre-Celebration Blues

Pre-Celebration Blues

Reasons why I haven't been excited by my upcoming birthday.
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Every year I feel like a mid-life crisis occurs on my birthday.

The smallest setbacks send my emotions into a doom-and-gloom territory.

Anything from others' birthdays being right before or after mine, to not booking plans exactly when I wanted to, makes me not want to celebrate.

Before my birthday I'm a complete bratty mess. "I want it done NOW!" "Mine! Mine! Mine!" "Now! Now! Now!" Then when I start to see others happily celebrating their birthdays right before my own, I get severely depressed and go through the motions till a few days after my birthday. The rest of the year is dedicated to regret and making plans that again won't go through on my next birthday.

Planning ahead is something I've always lived for, and yet the one thing I cannot follow through on.

I feel like that's one of the things that depresses me about my birthday the most; thinking of all the things I planned for and wanted to accomplish, but yet here comes another year of that desire not being fulfilled.

I notice that the majority of people who don't make plans in life receive all that life has to offer. Good paying jobs, networking opportunities, love, their own houses, cars, endless friendships. Those of us who consciously make plans to get the things others get easily are forever receiving only crumbs when we were working towards the cake.

This makes me want to do a study on if certain personality types are prone to shittier lives. Is there a correlation between those who don't get ahead in life and their birth sign? At what point does one just chuck their life plans and go with the flow like everybody else?

But I digress.

February 1st will be my 37th birthday and already my depression is in full effect. I wake up every day in brat mode and by mid-afternoon, I'm a depressed mess. What's wrong with me? Getting another year older doesn't excite me like it used to.

I looked forward to my 18th birthday because I was FINALLY considered an adult and could legally escape my childhood home and traumas.

Though I don't drink alcohol or dance, my 21st birthday meant I could finally join my friends when they went out to bars and clubs.

At 25, I could finally rent a car so I could travel wherever and whenever I wanted.

However, once I reached my 31st birthday, I had not become a published author like I'd dreamed of becoming since I was a small child. I hadn't received my Bachelor's degree. I wasn't married. I still live paycheck to paycheck. Since then, every birthday has been the current routine of brattiness followed by depression and regret.

So is this it? Since everything I looked forward to didn't happen in my timeframe now every birthday henceforth is like, "Meh. Who cares?"

The few great birthdays I've had was my 25th birthday, my 30th birthday and my 35th birthday.

When I turned 25 I got my first tattoo - despite my fear of needles. I also was completely spoiled by endless female strip dances!

When I turned 30, my friends helped me throw myself a Twilight Saga themed birthday bash! Complete with movie marathon viewings, playing an interactive Twilight Board game, and a surprise customized cake (because two of my friends are custom cake makers - plug for Kake Kingz https://www.facebook.com/kakekingz/!)

When I turned 35, one of my friends helped me arrange to watch a private live lesbian sex show! Took me back to wild days as a teenager and early 20's!

Should I just alternate between being a voyeur at all-girl sexcapades and Twilight saga remembrances for the rest of my life? As fun as those things were, in the grand scheme of my life, partying like that every year feels childish and a bit selfish to me.

I want my birthday to mean more to me than just that one sliver of personal indulgence that I can't get regularly.

I have a great itch to travel, and despite my awful preplanning skills before and throughout, I've managed to visit Columbus, New York City, and Cincinnati multiple times, in addition to traveling to Toledo, Philadelphia, and Chicago.

I have Forks Washington (come on, I'm a Twilight FANATIC - I have to see the place the saga was based!), Washington D.C., Amherst, Massachusetts, Ellis Island, and Paris on my Traveling Bucket List.

I also have to finish getting the second tattoo I have (that I started on my 35th birthday) completed, and get the five more I want.

I want to eat New York Pizza again, eat Chicago's Deep Dish Pizza again, and try every dish offered at Gordough's in Austin, Texas.

Sounds like good goals right? So why am I still not feeling like celebrating?

Cover Image Credit: Kimberly Steele

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10 Things Someone Who Grew Up In A Private School Knows

The 10 things that every private school-goer knows all too well.

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1. Uniforms

Plaid. The one thing that every private school-goer knows all too well. It was made into jumpers, skirts, shorts, scouts, hair ties, basically anything you could imagine, the school plaid was made into. You had many different options on what to wear on a normal day, but you always dreaded dress uniform day because of skirts and ballet flats. But it made waking up late for school a whole lot easier.

2. New people were a big deal

New people weren't a big thing. Maybe one or two a year to a grade, but after freshman year no one new really showed up, making the new kid a big deal.

3. You've been to school with most of your class since Kindergarten


Most of your graduating class has been together since Kindergarten, maybe even preschool, if your school has it. They've become part of your family, and you can honestly say you've grown up with your best friends.

4. You've had the same teachers over and over

Having the same teacher two or three years in a row isn't a real surprise. They know what you are capable of and push you to do your best.

5. Everyone knows everybody. Especially everyone's business.

Your graduating class doesn't exceed 150. You know everyone in your grade and most likely everyone in the high school. Because of this, gossip spreads like wildfire. So everyone knows what's going on 10 minutes after it happens.

6. Your hair color was a big deal

If it's not a natural hair color, then forget about it. No dyeing your hair hot pink or blue or you could expect a phone call to your parents saying you have to get rid of it ASAP.

7. Your school isn't like "Gossip Girl"

There is no eating off campus for lunch or casually using your cell phone in class. Teachers are more strict and you can't skip class or just walk right off of campus.

8. Sports are a big deal

Your school is the best of the best at most sports. The teams normally go to the state championships. The rest of the school that doesn't play sports attends the games to cheer on the teams.

9. Boys had to be clean-shaven, and hair had to be cut

If you came to school and your hair was not cut or your beard was not shaved, you were written up and made to go in the bathroom and shave or have the head of discipline cut your hair. Basically, if you know you're getting written up for hair, it's best just to check out and go get a hair cut.

10. Free dress days were like a fashion show

Wearing a school uniform every day can really drive you mad. That free dress day once a month is what you lived for. It was basically a fashion show for everyone, except for those upperclassmen who were over everything and just wore sweat pants.

Cover Image Credit: Authors Photos

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Just Because You Like To Record Everything Doesn't Mean You're Not 'In The Moment'

The camera SHOULD be used for recording life.

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"Stop taking a snap of it!" "Why do you always have to take pictures?" These are sayings I usually hear as a person who likes to record everything. To tell you the truth, Snapchat is the app I use the most because I'm either snapping someone or more importantly, looking at all of the memories I have saved. Saving memories is an important aspect in my life because in a way it allows for time to reflect. It also gives you momentum to keep.

If you like to record everything, don't feel guilty about it.

It just shows that you like to look back at memories. Of course, if you are doing this you also genuinely care about whatever you are doing at the moment. Don't let other people tell you otherwise. Do you remember VHS? Well, if you were a child growing up in the '00s, then you know that most of your life as a child was recorded on VHS tapes. VHS tapes could cover years of childhood, including birthdays, opening presents, get-togethers, and many other occasions. Similarly, you could say it's the same thing as Snapchat, just more innovative.

Being "in the moment" means you are taking everything in and truly appreciating the moment you are in. I STILL AM ABLE TO DO SO. When I am older and just want to look back on the good old days, I know I will be able to because these memories are saved. As annoying as those daily Snapchat memories can be, they're actually really nice to look at sometimes. Of course, minus the past relationships or past friendships you've had that aren't in your life anymore.

More importantly, try to treasure the moments that you do have. You honestly never know if that is going to be the last time you are hanging out with that person or the last time you are going to be talking to them. Life is precious and so are the little moments that it brings. Gratitude is such an important thing to have. It's important to live your best life and try to be as happy as you can because you honestly never know when your last day is going to be. You never know what can happen, so that's why I take photos and videos of special moments, so they can be saved forever.

There's a quote that says "Realize what you have before it turns into what you had," and I try to live by this because regret can be a painful thing.

Watch this motivational video about living life to the fullest. I hope this success video motivates and inspires you to live your life to the fullest. You have to remember that the number of days you have to 90 is 32,850 days. The average life expiration in the USA is 78 years old, which is 28,470 days. Try to maximize your days and get out there and start living. And don't forget to snap a picture or a video of it, so you will be able to look back at those moments and smile. It doesn't hurt!

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