The Rockwood Files: The Birthday List

By Gwen Rockwood, newspaper columnist and mama of 3

By the time these words make it into print, I’ll be a year older. Here’s a list of what I know:

  1. All I want for my birthday is to not have a party at Chuck E. Cheese.
  2. I carry Tums around in my purse in case pepperoni pizza doesn’t like me.
  3. In my twenties, the only things in my purse were lip gloss and Juicy Fruit.
  4. My birthday doesn’t seem like a big deal, but getting my kids registered for summer camp programs is a “can’t miss it” event.
  5. When my 7-year-old found out what year I was born, he acted like he couldn’t even imagine a time so long ago – like I was some sort of Mommy dinosaur.
  6. A person my age should not still be getting acne.
  7. Did dinosaurs get acne, too?
  8. If somebody could give me a birthday nap, I would love it.
  9. And I could really use it, too.
  10. But it’s tough to gift wrap a nap.
  11. Cake is always good, and nobody makes a better birthday cake than your own mother.
  12. The best birthday cake in the world is Mandarin Orange cake with Cool Whip frosting.
  13.  My mom is coming to visit for my birthday.
  14.  I’m hoping cake will be involved.
  15.  I wouldn’t “do it all over again” even if I could.
  16.  Growing up is hard, and one time around is plenty.
  17.  Having said that, if I could regain the thighs and chest of my early twenties, I would appreciate them SO much more than I did back then.
  18.  Muscle tone and perkiness are indeed wasted on the young.
  19.  I still care what other people think.
  20.  But I now realize I don’t need to care about what “everybody” thinks.
  21.  It’s important to pick your people carefully.
  22.  It seems like I should “have it all together” by now.
  23.  Yet sometimes I’m at the complete mercy of a little girl wearing Dora the Explorer diapers.
  24.  As 2-year-old bosses go, mine makes up for occasional defiance with a cute smile, a tight hug and a “Wuv you” before she goes to sleep at night.
  25. That gets me every time.
  26. This motherhood thing is not a bad gig, if you can get it.
  27.  But you’ve got to deal with a lot of bodily fluids along the way.
  28.  In my head, I don’t feel a day over 28.
  29.  I wonder how old I’ll be when, in my head, I won’t feel a day over the age I am today.
  30.  Brigitte Bardot once said “It’s sad to grow old, but nice to ripen.”
  31.  I hope I’m ripening nicely and not turning brown and smelly on the kitchen counter.
  32.   When my kids are teenagers, I don’t want them to think I’m ancient and completely out of touch.
  33.  But they probably will, right? Because they’ll be teenagers and they’ll know everything by then.
  34.  When people lie about their age, it implies that the years are something to be ashamed of instead of the gifts they really are.
  35.  I’m okay with my age, and it’s on the record.
  36. Anybody who finishes this list is privy to the number. Happy Birthday to me and to all my fellow moms who are ripening along with me.



Comments are closed.