The best thing about my birthday this year was being reminded of how many truly amazing people there are in my life. From start to finish it was one of the best days that I have had in Scotland. The day started with cards and packages from home. My friends Ben and Maggie sent me a cat card that had me giggling, and my mom sent me a box of all my favorite candies and snacks. This year Kelly and I sent each other the same present (cuddly sheep) and the dancing hamster card she sent me is something I am going to show everyone.
My favorite Texan started my day here by treating me to real Mexican food and cake. The food was amazing. My tummy was very happy, and I was touched that she would take time to make sure my day started off on the right foot. My trainstationist made me a penguin card, found the largest piece of chocolate in Scotland, and the best sheep key chain ever, and happily presented them to me upon my return. She also ran interference when creepy dude at the pub tried to slip me his digits.
In the early afternoon I was able to talk to my mommy. I knew that I wasn’t going to be able to see Kelly, but being able to see my parents was worth it. I will get to see them officially in a month, but this was a good spot in the day. I was also able to connect with a lot of my friends and family at home. One of the best gifts was a text, and lot of understanding from one of my best friends. I was cruel to her, but she was by far the bigger person by reaching out to me. I was able to talk to David, but because I am a fucktard, it was not one of the bright spots of my day. He bought me a beautiful dress for Valentine’s Day and my birthday, and topped it off with the perfect T-Rex necklace.
Although I had dinner in the JMCC, I was able to share the meal with the wonderful people that live on my floor. One of them gave me a very sweet card, and I was showered with hugs and laughter.I then set off to my favorite pub to celebrate the day with the girls from my program and the 5 people that I love spending my days with.
The pub was so much fun. It got off to a slow start,and I had a moment of panic thinking no one would come, but everyone from my program came (1 was there in spirit, and sent me a wonderful gift) and they showered me with amazing cards and gifts. I got really amazing chocolates, thoughtful and beautiful cards, cake, waffles, and a book of amazing poems, short stories and speeches. All of the girls signed a giant card for me, and you can bet that I am going to be keeping that for a very long time. Everyone hung out, traded laughs and stories, and kept me well supplied with Sailor Jerry and coke. Thursday nights are karaoke night at the pub, and I had so much fun singing along and cheering on the boys as they sang Men at Work, Journey, and a few other tunes. They even got the pub to sing me happy birthday, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I wore a new dress, gossip and laughed with my friends, and did my part by singing, cheering, and laughing to the songs performed throughout the night. I even managed to charm a guy enough for him to pass me his number. Luckily Cecile was there to inform him that I was not interested. I maintain that it was the amazing dress that my mother sent me.
One of the best gifts I got this year was a book. It isn’t sold in stores yet, and the author is not well known, but it is one of my favorite books. At 85 pages, I can now see my pages in tangible form. I had a real emotional moment when I opened the package to see my blog in book form. People keep joking that I should turn this into a book, and I joke that I really only have 7 readers, but in truth, seeing my words in book form means a lot to me. This started out as a little journal to chronicle my life here, and lately it has become more than that. It has become my outlet for all the crazy thoughts that are in my head, and my help to sort out how to heal. The note written on the wrapping said:
Words are my daily bread, feed my soul, give me strength.
Truer words have never been spoken.Having others see value in my words, and think enough of me to present me with such a gift is amazing. I feel very loved, and very much the opposite of alone.
While the night would have been made perfect by spending it with Kelly, I know that this is a birthday that I will remember forever.