Tuesday, July 15, 2008

happy birthday?

i've contemplated writing this blog for several weeks. i'm usually fairly hesitant to discuss serious issues on the internet, much less serious issues that pertain to my personal life. in fact, that's kind of true of my life in general i think. it's not that i consider my personal life to be such privileged information, i don't really have anything to hide. i guess i just don't really feel the need to share a whole lot. i've got a handful or less of people that i share my insides with and i don't really need much more than that. nevertheless, i feel like i should keep my friends informed on the important stuff and this topic in particular has been one that i've had trouble articulating to even my closest friends.

this sunday, i'm turning a quarter-of-a-century old. birthdays have never really been a big deal to me but this one is a different situation altogether. it's my first birthday without my cousin mike. mike's birthday is the day before mine so my entire life, i've never had birthday where i don't think about him as well.
as some of you guys may know, my family suffered a huge loss this past december and i'm afraid we're all still in various states of grieving. even now, it's hard to even think about him without breaking down. i can't even get through typing this without crying which is why i'm choosing to blog rather than attempt to talk about it the way i'd like to.

it was a tough decision figuring out how to celebrate my birthday or if i even should at all. i feel so incredibly lucky to have amazing friends who want to celebrate me and who i'd love to celebrate with but i don't know how to articulate how hard it's going to be this year. i change my mind every few seconds about what to do or not do. i have so much to celebrate, between my amazing year back home in seattle, amazing friends and an incredible family. even his life -- as painfully cut short as it was -- is certainly something worth celebrating. my younger cousin jane shares his birthday and she is certainly worth celebrating. the birthdays of two of my best friends in the whole world are the day after mine and they are certainly worth celebrating. and i know as cheesy as it sounds, mike would probably want me to celebrate too. it's just still really really hard and really really fresh.

so this is not a plea for sympathy, i've been so generously showered with understanding and sympathy by my incredible friends. i guess this is just an update of sorts. it's strange because every time i talk about my birthday, i want to follow it up with a disclaimer but i know that if i were to start, i wouldn't be able to get through it without tears. i dunno. i guess i'm at a loss as to what else to do at this point. it's not that i haven't wanted to talk about it but besides the fact that i can't talk about it without crying, i've been trying to avoid "that look" from my friends. it's a look of genuine care and sympathy but a look that makes it impossible not to cry. and not that i'm avoiding my grief or trying to be distracted from it, not that that's even possible. my good moods thus far haven't been and in the future will not be disingenuous and while i don't want to preemptively predict a tear-filled birthday, the reality is, this year may just be that. and maybe it won't, i don't know. i guess the only way i know how to articulate this spot i am in is by saying more or less what i said in december: there is no right way to grieve when you're dealing with a circumstance that is so incredibly wrong. and the inverse is also true, there's no wrong way either.

i appreciate your patience and understanding in the meantime.


ali said...

xoxoxo Jess :)

H. said...

you've found another reader. keep blogging!