Since I am two days late I understand you being annoyed, but I am sorry family business got in the way and I wanted to write on my birthday and talk about being older than when I posted last. We were traveling and I did not put a lot of effort into trying to find a computer to type on Sunday, I also enjoyed hanging out with the friends we were staying with in Mobile than writing about life and myself (sometimes my ego loses the battle, but it is rare). Back to the topic at hand: life, coming closer to death, and what to do in the meantime.
I doubt that I will impart a great deal of knowledge on you in this little amount of text, but here goes nothing. My birthday is December 31st. There are many ways to look at this: 1) this is the greatest day for any parent as it is the biggest tax break most middle or lower class people will ever get 2)everyone parties on my birthday 3) most people forget your birthday until they see you that day and give you a beer to make up for it 4) you find out who your real friends are by them throwing you a surprise party (Keith Kirkland you the man!) 5) you have a great wife who tries her hardest to help you spend every birthday in a different city (my wife is the best, read the post before this!)
I have been doing some thinking and think that my birthday has defined me. Let me explain. My birthday is the one day of the year where people promise themselves or others that they will change. Since I have been a human being for 37 years now it is very apparent to me that we as a species do not like change overall. Here is where my birthday has made me different. In some part of my brain that has made me always want to change. If you have ever met me I do the normal things that humans do by getting into routines, doing the same thing over and over, and for the most part enjoying it. This is where I tend to break from my species. Overall, there are certain things that I like and let remain the same, but mostly I am a beast of change. Even when I was growing up within the confines of my parents providing for me everyday I moved 6 times before I was in 8th grade. This had a profound impact on how I interacted with other humans. I had to make friends fast, have a thick skin, and generally adapt to new situations without getting eaten alive by the fellow vultures called kids. My first adaptation method was to have a sense of humor about myself. In almost any situation I was able to make fun of myself before anyone else got a chance and this helped for two reasons: 1) it diffused anyone being a bully to me because I took away their thunder 2) I have a high self-esteem (some call it ego, I call it confidence) and what people said normally didn’t bother me, so ultimately if someone did make fun of me I ignored them because in my heart I was somewhat cool or maybe just indifferent to their judgements. This much movement helped me to navigate through high school. After that I decided all on my own that I should try and beat my parents record of moves and lived like a nomad for the next 17 years.
In the next 17 years I moved 13 times. Not all of them were to new cities, but to new locations within the same city- college it is a wild ride. I moved to Auburn, around Auburn, back to B’ham, Alabaster, Southside, Southside, Southside, North Carolina, New York City, Austin, TX, and back to B’ham and now reside in hopefully my more permanent place Homewood. In all that moving I was always happy and enjoyed the challenge of setting up roots somewhere else, even if those roots did not go that deep. It feels that my whole life has been a big change. It is obvious to me that most people cringe when they hear how much I have moved, but to me it has centered me and made me the whole ball of crazy you now see today. Not to mention that I will get up and travel to anywhere in the world in a moments notice. My lovely wife has promised me that she will do what she can to get me to see everything, but I know that monetary restraints will keep this from happening. I still love her for placating to me and trying her damnedest. My whole life has been an ever changing mass that keeps moving through this reality. The insane thing to me is that I actually get excited about all the change. It makes me wake up in the morning and I am excited about what is to come. Now be aware there are some unchanging things in my life: my wife is amazing and will always be that way, my lust for finding something new will hopefully never change, and my love for both watches and bikes! Besides that I hope that everyday brings something new because being born on the last day of the year has made me a being of change.
Being born on the one day of the year where people want to change has had a vast impact on my psyche. Whether people follow through with their change or not it is a day universally that people want to change. It feels that being born on this last day of the year where so many people put so many thoughts of change out into the world has flowed into the creature that now inhabits my body and mind. It has given me a foundation in the belief that everything must change and that change is good. The irony of a foundation built on something different all the time does not escape me, but it is one of the few things that I know for certain in life and gives me solace that change is the one of the things I can count on everyday. Although people on average do not want to change, it happens and I have come to embrace it rather than fight it or get angry about it. When I wake up tomorrow the sun will rise again, the sun will set, and all I can control is what I choose to do in that time period. As everyone says every year at this time: “I want to do (fill in the blank) differently than last year. My thoughts are I know things will be different I just cannot wait to see how different they will be and am thankful for the opportunity to experience it all, hopefully.