The following is going to be a very long, sad, pathetic and true story, but it ends on a good note. I thank you in advance if you read it. It's therapeutic for me to write stuff down sometimes.
This is all hard to admit - I am a thirty-two-year old man and a self-admitted man-child, though not by choice. I'm overweight (I eat my feelings), I'm unattractive, and I suffer from some mental disabilities. i.e. Autism, A.D.D., visual dyslexia, etc. One of the other issues I have is poor social skills. As a result, I literally have no long-term friends. I never have. I work a very low-income job that is not worth bragging about, I live with my parents and I also don't know how to drive a car because I don't have the mental capabilities.
My birthday is November 1st and all I had to celebrate my birthday with was my fifty-eight-year-old Mother who can be very grumpy. (My father was out of town, gambling during the weekend of my birthday.) My Mom had spent the past week in another city tending to my older sister who just had major dental surgery. My Mom also had to help care for my three young nieces. When my Mom came back home the day of Halloween, she was tired and cranky, but you would think with it being my birthday weekend, she could somehow muster up the strength to be happy.
Before I continue I need to add a short story so you can have a better understanding of where I am coming from - There was one time (when I had my own apartment) that my Mom and I planned to get supper together, but because of her mood and her claims of being very tired, she ruined the experience. I initially offered for us to postpone, but she insisted, and as I typed, she messed up the mood of the evening by ranting and raving about how exhausted she was the entire time. Well after she dropped me back at my place that same night, I saw her checking in at a bar on Facebook with a friend of her's. I guess she wasn't that tired. But my Mom does stuff like that all the time. She will say she is tired, but then will suddenly get the energy to do whatever she likes to do.
Halloween is my favorite holiday. I generally don't like myself, so I enjoy getting to pretend to be someone else. I also wear really nice costumes and masks, so people in the downtown area treat me like a celebrity and want to take pictures with me. Because I am such an extremely lonely person, I absolutely love the positive attention. This is an experience I look forward to every year. Since I don't have birthday parties anymore, I consider being downtown my birthday party. I would opt to have no birthday presents ever again if I could spend hours street performing. Having no friends and not being able to drive, I have to depend on my Mom to drive me to that area. Luckily, in the past, she has enjoyed going downtown too and she had a friend that was going with us this year.
She was in a bad mood before we went out because she couldn't figure out how to do her make-up. She didn't have time to carve the pumpkin either, even though she had all day to do it and my Dad forgot to do it before he left. I also asked her if she would take pictures of me in my costume, but because we were so short on time, we didn't and agreed to do it when we got home.
Then when we got out to the downtown area, we went our separate ways. Well, at one point, she and her friend met back up with me and she noticed highly realistic fake blood on my lip that wasn't there before. You see, I have this fake severed ear prop that has fake blood on it. I pretended to eat it in front of people. Anyhow, the fake blood got on my lip. When my Mom saw it, I kept trying to tell her that I put that on there, but she wouldn't believe me. She was convinced someone hit me, so she just kept staring at me like she thought I was lying and asking me what happened.
I tell her again.
She keeps staring.
It was soooooo annoying and frustrating. :-( She even asked me (almost whispered) if I wanted to leave as if I was too scared to say what I was really feeling in front of her friend. I looked at her like she was crazy. My Mother has typically always believed me when I tell her stuff. We have a honest relationship. Always have typically. (As a child however, I was socially awkward and would lie to people to avoid hurting their feelings or to avoid making myself look bad, and my Mom always knew that, but I haven't been like that since childhood. It makes me wonder if my Mom is starting to go senile, but fifty-eight isn't that old.)
She later claimed she had trouble hearing me, which is why she kept asking me what happened.
She was in a bad mood also because of the large crowd so it's almost like she wanted to believe I got punched so we could have an excuse to leave or something. Well, I finally got her to believe me, then we departed again.
I spent four hours out there, took lots of pictures, and I made plenty of people happy, so that part was not messed up, thank goodness.
But during the last hour, she kept bugging me about leaving. I finally agreed to leave just to please her and I wasn't happy about that because we got out there late due to her make-up issues and I felt we left a little earlier then usual.
Then the friend we were with gave her some birthday money to give to me earlier in the evening. In front of me, she kept telling her friend to take the money back. If her friend wants to give me a gift, what moral right does she have to tell that person not to give it to me? I should be the one who politely refuses it, not her. But that is how she treats me. She talks for me (in front of me) to others all the time and I have to ask her to please stop in front of people. She didn't use to do that, but in recent years, she does it all the time, and if a friend of her's gives me something, *she* thanks them like she is getting the gift and she does it in front of me. If she is going to do that, why can't she do it when I am not around at least? No matter how many times I ask her to please stop talking for me or thanking others for the gifts they give me, she does it anyhow in the future. :-(
Anyhow, I confronted her about the issue with her friend after we got back home, and she just angrily stormed off. I felt *awful*. I felt like a pet had just died or that I just broke up with a woman. It was Halloween night and after celebrating it, I am suppose to feel very tired, but very happy, but I felt like crying that night. I was already sad about having to leave downtown early and I felt even more horrible then. Needless to say, we didn't take pictures.
In an effort to save the night, I asked her if she would drive me to a fast food restaurant we go to every year after Halloween night. She agreed and I apologized to her even. However, I still felt very upset on the inside and honestly didn't enjoy my food.
The next day, my birthday, I was still really sad, but we took a day trip to an antique shop (because I enjoy artifacts) and got some donuts, which in recent years has become my traditional replacement for birthday cake since I like donuts so much, but rarely eat them. Then the night came, and more problems.
Before I opened my gifts, my Mom didn't sing "Happy Birthday" to me beforehand or put any candles on the donuts she bought. She also left the price tags on several of the presents, which I thought was rude.
She asked if I wanted to do anything before dinner. I said I wanted to take one picture of me with my costume on, but she had no interest. She made an uninterested face and said "You wanna do that? Why don't we just do it tomorrow?" Not wishing to argue and being a person who is against guilt trips, I agreed.
Before we left for dinner, she furiously complained and loudly cursed about the garage door not working properly. That garage door has been a major problem for a while now, so I am used to that. She drives me to work every morning and I always have to hear her complain about it and why my Dad won't have it fixed. You see, the garage door is always about to close, but then goes back up. It does this over and over again, so my Mom has to keep pushing this button she has in her car, which really agitates her and causes her to scream and curse loudly until it finally goes down, but I thought maybe on my birthday I could get a break from her screaming and yelling about the garage door. Her intense screaming and swearing added tension to the ride to the restaurant.
She could have parked the car outside and asked me to wait inside and I could have closed the door for her, then gone around to the front door and got in the car. The knob that controls the garage door is easier to control then the knob that she has in her car, but I didn't think to do that. She could have however and you would think on my birthday, a loving Mom would spare her son her ranting and ravings about any topic. She would never act that way in front of a guest and would have thought of ways to avoid drama if there was a possibility to avoid it and all I asked for was to have one night where I could be treated like a guest.
Admittedly, I might be guilty of nit-picking in regards of my Mom screaming about the garage because she does it so often, and not singing Happy Birthday. Honestly, I was still bummed about Halloween. But I even if Halloween had been perfect, I still would have briefly felt a little awkward about my Mom screaming because it was suppose to be a fun night, and it's hard to get in a good mood after hearing anyone loudly screaming and cursing.
When we got to the restaurant, we were given an option of what kind of sauce we wanted on our dinner. My Mom asked me what kind I wanted and I told her. She made a face and said it didn't sound good and insisted we pick this other kind of sauce. I mean, who's birthday is it over here? Why even bother asking me what I want if you already had another sauce in mind? I remember she did that last year on my birthday when I was picking a desert for us to share. I picked out a desert, and she insisted I pick the desert she wanted. Not wanting to make waves then, I didn't say anything. I could let that go. In general, I let a lot of little things go, but when little things keep happening, it becomes a big thing.
My Mom also complained about the cost of the dinner and how much we could spend. She got water in an effort to save money. Again, that is so rude to do to a person on their birthday. She even literally put the bill in front of my face at the end of the night and I could clearly see how much dinner was. She did that because she wanted to know the % of it or something. It was something related to the tip and she apparently couldn't see it. That is such an inconsiderate thing to do in my opinion. Why not figure out to this money stuff before hand and keep it to yourself if you're going to treat someone on their birthday?
I couldn't hold in my emotions any longer and it was apparent to my Mom and even the server (according to my Mom) that I was very miserable looking. At one point, my Mom shook her head at me, looked at me like I was pathetic, and said "You are a lover of misery."
She has said that to me so many times before. I always tell her "Misery loves me."
Then I asked her if I was like this last year - I wasn't, because she was in a better mood then. I then went on to list all the times I was happy about and how circumstances caused my happiness to end, which resulted in my depression. From having actual girlfriends to having them break my heart, to learning to drive, but failing my driver's test, to having a place of my own, but having to move back home because I ran out of money. My misery is a reaction to miserable things happening to me. I hate being unhappy as much as anyone would.
My Mom had nothing to say then. She had tears in her eyes. I had plenty that weekend too.
She drove us home and we sat in silence the whole time. When we got home, I walked to a bar and had a few drinks in a final effort to save my birthday.
I confronted her about all this stuff the next morning. All she did was cry and tell me I was ungrateful.
This whole experience had reminded me of so many unhappy birthdays I had in my childhood.
I remember when I was a kid and when I use to have real birthday parties with the whole family, every year in school I would pass out invitations in class to my birthday parties. Only one kid showed up one time one year. No one else ever did.
This is one of the many reasons why I am such a depressed, lazy, fat, and angry person. I never asked to be born, and I didn't asked to be born with mental problems. I realize if you're a parent raising a person with mental problems it is very hard and if you have issues of your own, it's never going to be easy, so when that person's birthday comes up, perhaps subconsciously my Mom and Dad are reminded of the mistake they literally made when I was conceived, and that is why in the past, both have been so mean to me on my day of birth or one of them will be in a bad mood and anger the other, and next thing you know, there is a huge argument between them. Perhaps because I have offered very little for them to be proud of, they consider celebrating my birthday a major inconvenience for them and it gets in the way of things they rather being doing.
Heck, my Mom even told me the next day after the bad birthday dinner that she could have gone to some party that weekend in this other city we use to live in, but she stayed home for me. You would think it being her son's birthday, she would have stayed home because it's the right thing to do, not because she was doing me a favor like the way she made it out to be. She goes to parties and bars all the time anyhow, but her missing that one party partially explained her mood, but I very much doubt my Mom would have been tired and cranky if she went to *that function*. It was only on Halloween night and my birthday night that her fatigue seemed to really kick in.
(Remember that short story I told you earlier about her complaining about having supper with me, but then checked in at a bar on Facebook that same night?)
As a kid, I had birthday parties with my whole family. Then in time it was just me, my parents and sister. Then it was just me and my parents. Now it's just my Mom and I. Mom is the last one stuck with me and I wonder if that is what generates her anger. Everyone else in the family gets to *not* be apart of my day of birth, but she is stuck doing all the work on my birthday.
I realize birthday's are more for the young. Then when you are in your twenties, it's an excuse to party and binge-drink with your friends, but by the time you turn 30, it's no longer a big deal. If you have a spouse and kids, they may do stuff for you, and if you have a good relationship with your co-workers, they may give your cake or something. But being that I am a thirty-two-year-man-child with mental disabilities (who has no friends, doesn't drive, and the chances of me getting a wife and kids is pretty slim) and who only has his Mom to celebrate his birthday with, the Mother would try very here to make the birthday pleasant.
For the most part, I am a very quiet man who hides in his room all day, and even at work, I keep to myself, trying to stay out of people's way. I ask for very little and I expect nothing. I will take cabs to work, I will do my laundry, and I don't need home cooked meals. I can get my own food. All I ask for of my Mom and family is October 31st to please be my day. I don't even need November 1st as long as I can have October 31st to be perfect.
This is why I express little interest to others on my birthday because all it does is cause stress for me and my family. I have enough child-like traits and I believe the answer to all these problems is to simply stop celebrating it. I should remove my birthday on my Facebook so no one will be reminded of it. If my Mom asks me for birthday gift ideas in the future, I will not tell her. Or if I am asked if I would like to go anywhere to eat, I will say no. Perhaps reverse psychology is the answer. Even if it doesn't work, at the very least, I can have inner-peace on my birthday.
Despite everything, there was a happy ending and some hope.
My Mom and I got into another a second argument on that day after my birthday dinner. While I was originally angry, I calmed down and essentially was able to convince my Mother that she was incorrect with her words and actions. We ended up going to lunch, she took some great pictures of me in my costume in a good location, we went to the zoo, and then a movie. A package containing a gift also arrived and I was able to open up a present. (Other late packages came in, so I was opening up gifts all week.)
I was born at 11:20 PM on November 1st. During that time in 2014, I was in a bar. I was still 31 during the night of drama. The next day, I was actually 32, so really, that day was my real birthday. With the exception of the arguments my Mom and I got into that morning, it had turned out to be a pleasant birthday.
During the actual hours of Halloween, I did everything I planned to do so no regrets there. I am also vacationing at the end of the month to a city that has street performers year round and I bringing my costume there to perform.
All and all, things concluded with a happy ending, but I admit, being a sensitive soul, I worry about something's triggering emotions when thinking about that night and bringing on another argument, which happened yesterday with my Mom and I, but things ended happily again.
The lesson - I admit, I felt just slightly cheated on Halloween night. However, I ended cheating myself completely the next night with my bad mood. I think my Mom did need to be confronted for her own bad mood, but perhaps I should not have added to it, turned the other cheek and waited for another time to confront her.
My challenge now is to try to look at the good things Halloween 2014 brought and to look to the future - Street performing very soon.
And Halloween 2015.