Pandemic and Possible birthdays
I wasn’t sure if I would be able to celebrate my birthday this year. Since quarantine, the economy has been crashing faster than when I tried wearing high heels for the first time, and a lot of people have been losing their jobs because of it. The bakery down the street has been closed, and I live in an area that sells a lot of cakes. I don’t know if I am going to have a cake or any party supplies. A lot of the stores that are still running are only selling “pandemic deemed essentials” so not a lot of birthday candles or confetti.
I am not tiring to sound entitled or stuck up. I know that we are currently in a crazy pandemic! So, of course, things are going to be different but I just wanted to have one day this year where I could just relax from the horror that is online schooling and make something about me. I mean I’m important too, right?
My biggest worry however is just buying things in general. Ever since the pandemic, my family has also been on a “pandemic deemed essentials” family budget. No buying unusual food items, no unnecessary amazon spending, and no going out. Well, that last one didn’t make much of a difference in my life. My parents are pretty strict and have been enforcing the “no going out to a friend’s house, they can come to our home,” since before the day I was born. This time it only felt worse because I had to stay home and couldn’t sneak out. I mean there was a virus outside, no late-night party is worth the risk of catching some virus.
Anyways I decided, in my head, that it would be better if I didn’t celebrate my birthday this year. Even though I was practically dying inside to eat something sweet and yummy like a cake I didn’t want to mess up my family’s budget. I know, I KNOW this sounds like a sad thing and you probably already feel pity for me but don’t because I have a reason. I wouldn’t have to face the birthday embarrassment. You know when you have to sit in front of the cake and everyone is recording you while singing the happy birthday song and you just have to smile and not look too weird… So that’s something to look forward to, I guess.
However, that would mean I would miss out on one thing my family loooooooves to do. Dance. After every and any event my family just somehow ends up dancing to music; birthdays, graduations, cookouts, you name it, they’ve been there and danced. I mean I have learned more cultural dances through my family just going to random parties and going along with it than in school! I would miss dancing after eating the birthday cake this year. And since we are in quarantine my family could just spend some time together, some quality family time together. Not to mention that we would be having fun during the school year and we don’t have to talk about grades and disappointment! This is a rare opportunity…and I would be missing out on it. Should I just have a birthday or not?
Penguins and procrastination
I was sitting at my desk contemplating whether or not I should start my summer homework… in an unsurprising turn of events, I decided to watch a movie instead. It’s not like I have anything better to do. I stood up and began to search for my remote which I seriously think has a pair of legs and moves around when I’m not looking like Woody from “Toy Story.”
At the peak of my adventure of finding the remote; for like the 200th time this week I found Mr.P, my stuffed animal penguin and licensed therapist (from his penguin village in Antarctica). I looked at Mr.P and smiled as I remembered all of the times where I ranted to him about my annoying elementary school drama when I was younger. I remember even feeling a bit jealous of him. His penguin village life was extremely simple; sleep, eat, gossip, protect the young ones, eat, hunt, and not to mention that penguins are extremely adorable.
I began to wonder what my life would be like if I was a penguin. Living in a completely white surrounding with no ceilings and crispy cold air, but thanks to the insulation installed called fur you’d feel warm. Never having to be the new kid because you live in a pack not to mention that once you found a mate you’d stay with them for life so no awkward first date introduction either! Walking with the pack in the morning as we enter the hanging area for breakfast while gossiping about the latest drama. Before I knew it we were standing on top of the cliff at the hunting area…just before getting pushed off. Sometimes penguins push one of the themes of a cliff to make sure there are no predators in the water below.
I kept looking for the tv remote for a while before finally giving up and thinking that maybe this is a sign from God saying “go do your homework, stop being lazy!” I sadly made my way to the desk and picked up my pencil before imminently putting it back down. I swing around in my chair while taking some deep breaths to prepare myself mentally for the frustration that is homework. I picked up my pencil again and began my homework.
Birthdays and Beautiful smiles
Yes. I already know that it’s kind of weird for me to want to celebrate my birthday especially after I wrote all that stuff about perfectly good reasons not to celebrate, but during my time of not doing my summer homework, I have had a couple of thoughts. Listen up. Birthdays are days meant to celebrate a person and make them feel special and happy. I have been working my bottom off in school and definitely deserve a “me day.” I mean hello, I am a consistent honor roll student and I potty trained my sister in less than eight months on my own! Yes, I am bragging because I worked hard and I deserve it.
Not to mention that this year has sucked. I mean I feel bad for the kids in the future history classes who have to learn about all the crazy things that happened in just 2020, imagine having a test on all that. I would fail that test and I LIVED THROUGH IT! This year has been crazy but I put up with it and persevered through it. Lastly, I am a strong independent black woman okay, and you guys have to support your fellow sisters. I don’t care about the rest, I am having this birthday and that is final.
So it’s the next day and I’m having doubts. Okay okay I know I said all of that awesome uplifting stuff and even felt kind of like a motivational speaker at one point, but don’t make that face yet. Just hear me out okay. Ummm how do I put this into words so… I woke up on my birthday feeling very conflicted. I want to have my birthday but during a pandemic, it seems kind of selfish. I mean people are dying like when Kim Kardashian lost her earring and her sister Kourt was just like “Kim there are people that are dying.” But I didn’t choose to be born at this moment in time.
I brushed my teeth, showered, and got ready for the day. Everything went as normal with my parents making a couple of trips to get “groceries” but I totally knew it was to get party supplies. I was kind of worried that they wouldn’t be able to find birthday supplies, but honestly, I’ve been feeling so worried lately that I decided to just put it in God’s hands and leave it there at this point. So I just needed to find something that would take a ridiculously long amount of time and could distract me for some time; I watched all the Twilight movies.
Eventually, it was night time and I was feeling excited again but low-key selfish on the inside but then I saw the cake. My family was singing the happy birthday song in a dimly lit room with the candles casting a warm light all around. It’s been such a long time since I felt connected to anyone or anything since the pandemic I guess I’ve been bored and isolated.
On this birthday, my family warmed me up on the inside with their out-of-tune singing, beautiful smiles, and genuine love. I don’t think it’s selfish to celebrate my birthday during a pandemic. I loved my birthday this year a lot!
Fireworks and Food
I just wanna know how the heck we are already in July because I swear June went by way too quickly to be considered a whole month. Like it is already the fourth of July! Not that I am complaining, I mean my mom told me that she had some fun plans for today.
I don’t mean like we celebrate the fourth of July or anything since black people didn’t really get freedom on the fourth of July, that’s why we have Juneteenth, duh! What I meant was that the fourth of July is just a day where all my family doesn’t have to work so we can totally goof off with each other. Unfortunately, since the pandemic, my family has had to work a bit harder to make ends meet. Don’t feel bad for me. Everyone has been affected by the pandemic and my family is just another one of them but we’re getting through it! My parents would work in the morning and then come back around the afternoon for the fourth of July plan.
Okay, so here’s the sitch…I know that no one says “sitch” anymore but I’ve been really bored since quarantine so I’ve been rewatching “Kim possible” (it’s a good show you should watch). Anyways the plan is that my family is going to get all dressed in beachwear then we would stop by a drive-thru to get some food and finish off the night with fireworks at the beach.
When my parents came back I had gotten my sister dressed, and my older brother had gotten my brothers dressed. We spent a couple of minutes afterward running around the house looking to see if we forgot to bring anything else with us to the beach and then we were off. I was excited for one reason and one reason only, food.
My family stopped at a nearby drive-thru and that plan was going smoothly, except for when my sister started to have a mini temper tantrum because she died in Roblox, but at least we made it to the beach! The fireworks had already started with one of my favorites of the night. It was huge, it was blue and then faded out into purple with a bit of pink and yellow. I thought my sister would be scared of the fireworks since she hates loud noises but she really enjoyed them probably because they were colorful I think.
Me being excited and ready to devour my food, I practically flew onto the beach and began to look for a spot to sit down. Today must have been my lucky day because I found the perfect spot, not too crowded, a bit far from the shore but not too close to the sidewalk, and with barely any bugs around. Except for Charlie, a crab on the beach that I named. Anyways I set down a large towel, cleaned my hands, and ate my food. My stomach felt super bloated because I ate a lot! I laid down for a while just to watch fireworks and relax but I eventually got bored and decided to join my family to just dance for a while.
Sure we might have looked crazy to anyone else looking at us, just a random family dining and dancing on a beach to random music but I didn’t really give a care in the world because this moment was and still is very special to me. There were fireworks exploding all around us which made the sky look super pretty. We were just dancing and having fun and laughing kind of like a scene out of a movie or something.
Today was awesome! Not only because my mom allowed me to order the food and get anything I wanted but also because I just had fun in general. We danced and danced until the fireworks and music stopped, then we went in the car and still the vibe was good. We talked and laughed the whole ride home with my dad playing his favorite R&B music playlist the whole ride home. I don’t remember what we were talking about but I do remember faces and how happy everyone looked. The night ended up with me falling asleep in the car against the night sky with cool music playing and happy chatter. I smiled, closed my eyes, and fell into a deep sleep.