I love my birthday. No, I mean really. Like a five year old at Chuck E. Cheese. It’s my favorite day of the entire year, second only to Christmas. I LOVE IT! It’s one day that’s only about me. I get to be selfish. I get to expect people to focus on ME. When people forget my birthday, I get a little upset. My husband, poor soul, learned this the hard way.
When we were dating, he forgot my birthday twice. He had some lame excuse the first year, like being in intensive care at the hospital for mono. And the second year, he thought having Lasik surgery and being in lots of pain was a good enough reason to let the day pass. (Please!) But by the third year, he finally understood and sneaked out of his room while serving in the Navy’s Officer Candidate School to use the phone to call me on my birthday. (Yes, it was breaking a military rule and he took a big risk, but it was MY BIRTHDAY!)
After that, it became the Robin Olson Birthday Extravaganza! No longer a day but an event! The first year we were married, I got a surprise trip to San Francisco for the day. Now we’re talkin’. Last year we spent the day at Hershey Park. And this year—well, this year is one for the books as well. We spend the evening downtown at a fancy dinner and then, dressed in our finest, took in a play—The Phantom of the Opera. Yes, the weather was awful and we lost the car, but it was still AWESOME. I got flowers and half a day off at work plus double bonus birthday rewards at Starbucks when I used my birthday reward (free coffee!) and got a coupon for another free drink 'cause I had to wait too long. Boy, do they know me! Cookbooks, new CD's and cards came from my family and a Starbucks gift card from the in-laws. Perfect.
Now, most years, Nick and I have strangely not been in the same city on my birthday. And it’s not always him that’s gone. After the first disastrous year, he was in San Diego and I was in Kansas City for two years running. Then he was in Florida while I was in San Diego. Almost every year after that, one of us was traveling. That doesn't mean anyone is off the hook by the way—in 2009, I was in New Orleans for work and was taken out to Emeril’s restaurant. Holy wow!
In all reality, though I really don’t care about presents or any of that. I just want it remembered. Make a bit of a fuss. Say happy birthday. Send me a card. Something—anything to let me know that you remembered today was the day I was born. I’ll return the favor on your day. If you don’t know it’s my birthday, don’t worry! I’ll be sure to let you know.