My Happy ‘Beti-day’
I like to think that I have a very practical mindset. That means that there are many beliefs and practices that people adopt uncritically which I really do not have the inclination to adopt. One of such things is birthday celebrations—and the whole fuss that goes into planning one or else alerting people to that fact so as to get presents and things of that nature.
Inasmuch as I understand the desire by people to remember and cherish the particular day of a particular month on which they were born, I see very little practical value in the way some people go to ridiculous extents to make the day seem extra special. Trust me, I am not trying to be cynical here—I suppose that for accounting purposes, it is useful to remember how many years one has managed to spend on this third rock from the sun.
But when you consider the way some spend outrageous sums to host their own birthday parties, often borrowing in the process, it makes me wonder if such people realize that with each additional day, with each additional year, they are hastening rapidly to their eventual demise. Each birthday celebration serves as a reminder of how age is creeping up on you steadily, and how you are on your sure and irretraceable march to your own death. But then we are creatures of emotions and shifting passions; we crave creaturely comforts and we are also social creatures—thus, it is often the case that people do not wax philosophical on these matters. Any opportunity to meet with friends and well-wishers; and to eat, drink and be merry, is certainly going to be welcomed in these trying and uncertain times.
It was with this thought that I decided to get together with some friends and family to celebrate my birthday—especially since I have not really done so in over 20 years. Yes, the reason was that big birthday celebrations were not my thing. I’ll not mind attending another’s birthday celebration if I was invited, but for my own birthdays, I usually do not give them much thought. There were years that I completely forgot my birthday—didn’t take off from work, didn’t tell a soul, didn’t get any presents (lol, I wonder what they give as birthday gifts these days), didn’t even remember to say a prayer. The day just rolled on by and I remembered that my birthday was gone weeks later.
It was a little different this time. I gathered together a few people and we had a good time and I daresay it was deeply touching. We feasted sumptuously, and I got some gifts which frankly, I totally didn’t expect. A few of them gave some heartfelt words of encouragement, and they even offered a grand prayer of continued success on my behalf—it was all a very touching gesture which I must say touched my heart. It is a good thing to have good friends and family.
But the gesture which completely shattered my usual stoic and cast-iron control over my emotions was the tremendous show of love and appreciation that I got from my Bunibuni family. I did not tell anyone that my birthday was near, and I would not have even mentioned it at all on that day or the day before. But somehow, someone got wind of it, and that set off an avalanche of goodwill and well-wishes on my Facebook wall. I did not have the chance to read them all because I was completely occupied yesterday (my birthday), but today, when I got the chance and went through them, I was completely shaken by the warmth and affection I received. Like the proverbial Grinch, I suppose I could say that my heart got 2 sizes bigger than it usually is.
God shall richly bless you all. As you have spared a kind thought and word for me, so shall others spare gracious thoughts, words and deeds for you. I want to sincerely thank each and every one of you for making my birthday even more memorable than I can ever remember in over 20 years. May the good Lord remember you all and lift you up in your time of great need.
My deepest gratitude goes to these following people:
Gaelle: you are an absolute darling; gracious and kind. I won’t easily forget the depth of our friendship. You know that I am always proud of you and the way that you have navigated life’s stormy seas. God is your rock, and I want to assure you that even greater victories lie ahead for you. Just believe it.
Siarani: I do not need to say much, but you know we have something like a telepathic connection. You have been sorely missed, but I fully understand the circumstances surrounding your absence. As soon as you are back in full force, you know we have some important business to discuss. Thanks for making it to my wall despite your episodic access to the internet. I loved that birthday mixer by the way. You have a knack for finding the right beats for every mood.
Juubsie & Simplyymee: No father has ever had more loving daughters than you two. That is why I am more than happy when I think about you two. I am not blind to the genuine care and concern that you’ve shown. My prayer is that my God will continue to dwell with you richly.
Molade: Of course this will not be complete if I do not mention the bubbliest firecracker of them all. To know Omolademiowon is to know a swirling torrent. It is to know a vivacious damsel. She is a delightful rollercoaster. I really appreciate that song you did—indeed words will fail me to express how touched I was by that act of charity. Do not lose that voice my dear. I’ll always be near whenever you beckon or call.
Journee: Crystal, I was more than shaken when I watched your video. It took the last ounces of manly resolve I had in me to avoid a wet eye. When I told you (upon knowing you better) that you have turned out to be one of the most mature and sophisticated ladies I’ve met on Bunibuni, I surely wasn’t mincing words. You are indeed an oasis in the desert; an island of tranquility in the midst of stormy seas. Keep being the radiant angel that you are. Thanks a lot for that awesome birthday gift.
Bruno, Sota and Bones: Bruno, one lovely attribute you have is the way you choose to do great and endearing things privately so as not to be seen by others. That humility and generosity is a magnet for more of God’s blessings on your life. My God will be with you in all things. Sota, you’ve continued to show yourself to be more than just a friend to me. Like Bruno, you chose the private route to express deeply stirring words. I knew you had the soul of a poet, but I’ll just have to say that you are now more like a brother to me. May heaven reward your efforts richly, and may your own day be even more blessed than mine has been. Bones, you surprise me every day with your versatility and talent. Just when I think I have you pegged, you up the ante. So, not only can you sing and play the guitar, it turns out that you are pretty good with a keyboard too. Have you considered doing some collaborative work with some of these great singers we have on Bunibuni? Thanks for that wonderful birthday gift my dear.
Once again, I thank you all. I cannot possibly speak of everyone here, but suffice it to say that you made one old man feel 18 again. It is the day after, and I am gradually getting back to an even keel.