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10-13-2003 @ 11:13 p.m.

I am 39 today.

It started out looking bleak. Last night, I was very sad. I just kept thinking about today and the fact that it was the first time in almost forever that I was looking at a birthday without a lunch date. I was missing Stacey something awful. Our birthdays are 4 days apart so I usually spend a lot of time together this time of year. And I was thinking about my mom. It was the first time in a long time that I really really missed her. It came on me quite suddenly when I crawled in bed. I felt pitiful, crying over being alone on my birthday, but I couldn't stop. I probably would have cried myself to sleep if my need for cuddling hadn't been mistaken by Ed for sexual advances. That's ok--I needed the diversion, and a lovely diversion it was. But it certainly wasn't what I was craving when I cuddled up to Ed. I was crying very quietly because I was embarrassed to be crying so I don't think he ever knew about it. That's ok--I felt better afterward, and that's the important part.

I was still feeling bummed out when I woke up though. I went to volunteer in Joey's classroom until 10am this morning and when I got done, there was a message from Brittney on my cell phone. She wanted to take me to lunch for my birthday. What a sweetie. I went grocery shopping, feeling much better (but still a little embarrassed at my pitiful state). When I got home, I put away the groceries and while I was waiting for Brittney to pick me up, Ed called from his cell phone and asked me what I was doing for lunch. What a dear--he knew I was bummed about being alone today. When I told him that I had been rescued by Brittney, he said that he'd just grab something for lunch and then stay home for the rest of the afternoon and do the dishes and then take me out to dinner. What a sweetheart.

Brittney and I had a lovely lunch at my favorite gourmet pizza restaurant and then we had a couple hours to kill so we went to the scrapbook store next door, the bookstore (where I bought Lying Aw@ke and Midd1esex for my reading pleasure), the craft store and then stopped by Britt's husband's office to say Hi. By the time I got home, I felt human again, and totally unpitiful. Yay!

Jamie stopped by with her 4-yr-old Michael and they sang Happy Birthday to me and she gave me a King's Singers madrigal CD. It's wonderful--I listened to it while I was preparing my notes for a photography class I'm teaching on Thursday.

My dad called and we talked for about a half hour, which was lovely. I haven't talked with him for a long time. He dropped his blood pressure 80 points without medication by doing exercise and chelation. That's pretty impressive. I'm glad to hear it--he's the only parent I have left so I'd like to keep him around. I was so delighted that he remembered my birthday. He's going to be here for dinner next week so I'm looking forward to that.

Amy called, too. We're spending the day together tomorrow because she had to work today. I wish we could have hung out today but it worked out fine anyway.

Stacey called this evening after we got back from going out to dinner and we talked for almost an hour. I enjoyed that--it was great to talk to her. I talked to her last week for her birthday, but I need at least an hour a week to keep sane.

Several other friends called to wish me Happy Birthday, too. Even a new friend I just met a few weeks ago. I guess my pity party was nothing more than just that--a pity party. I wasn't alone after all. I'm still not keen on being 39--only one more year until that nasty old 40 (apologies to those who've already attained that age). Next year I'll be watching myself turn 40 in Memphis because Stacey and I will be making a pilgrimage to Gracel@nd in honor of the occasion. (I needed something to look forward to.)

So I felt loved and remembered and cared for today. You can't ask for more than that.


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