Why Pride Ruins My Birthday

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Unlike most people (I’m guessing), I don’t generally get that excited when it comes to my birthday.  At least not anymore after many years (a lifetime?) of disappointment when I’ve tried to do something special to celebrate.

39th-birthday-cheaters-250And of course as we move through Gay Pride month (June, for those who are unaware) and get closer to my birthday, the feeling of ambivalence and that there’s no point in planning anything gets stronger and stronger.

You see, this year my birthday is the day after London Pride.. and generally falls on or around the same weekend most years.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy going to Pride, but when it overshadows my own birthday, it kind of makes me feel a bit resentful.  Regardless of how proud of my community I am.

A friend of mine said I should use Pride itself as my own birthday party, that I should just enjoy the day as if the parties and such were in celebration of my special day.  Except that doesn’t work because I’ve tried it many times before when Pride and my birthday have coincided.  Firstly because everyone wants to be out partying with their friends and enjoying the crowds, it’s pretty much impossible to organise anything for people to get together.

Secondly, if I were to try and get some people together on the Sunday (my actual birthday), I already know most people would be complaining about how broke they were from Pride, or how hung over they were.. or both.  Or already had other plans (had to remind a friend what day Sunday was after he said he was planning a quiet day with his boyfriend.. after he’d asked me several weeks ago what I was planning for the day).

sad birthdayBut I also wonder if maybe this is just me being pessimist about my ‘friends’ ability to do something together for me.  Mostly after the last time I tried to organise something, just some cheap drinks at a pub in Vauxhall on a Monday.. and the only two people out of those invited who agreed to show up were my flatmate and his best mate.  So I cancelled the event in a huff, and fucked off to the South Bank with a couple I used to hang out with from time to time.

Since then, with the exception of last year, I’ve usually spent the weekend with my best mate from Scotland whose birthday is 2 days before mine, usually with us spending the weekend down in Brighton (we went again this year, but the weekend before due to it being the Brighton Bear Weekender.. sun, fun, booze, and bears LOL).

Last year, as I wrote in my post ‘I’m 40?!? WTF!!!‘, I ended up sort-of celebrating my birthday (which did fall on Pride day itself) out in Essex, helping pour drinks for my mate’s neighbour’s birthday party.  Despite it being a big milestone birthday for me, I kept somewhat in the background as the woman celebrated her 60th, and barely did anything special for myself.

Screw the t-shirt.. can I have the man inside for my birthday??

Screw the t-shirt.. can I have the man inside for my birthday??

To be honest, I’ve never really had much luck when it comes to celebrating my birthday, as something else usually takes precedence, like Pride.  Even if it makes me feel like I’m allowing Pride to take precedence over my own personal celebrations.

But it goes back further than that.  Throughout the years I’ve never had much luck organising anything for my birthday, with most people coming up with excuses why they couldn’t come celebrate – I almost snapped years ago when a co-worker actually had the cheek to say I should push back my birthday for a week or so after the next payday.

Umm.. no.

It was bad enough as a kid when my parents used to occasionally hold off celebrating my birthday until the middle of July when it was my younger sister’s birthday, and they’d get us a cake together.. which was usually a girl’s cake.  😦  It just left me with a feeling that my birthday wasn’t as important to them for some reason (I’m sure there was more behind it, like finances or something).

So anyway, now I try not to make a big deal about my birthday because I don’t want to feel disappointed that it wasn’t as fun or exciting as I’d like it to be.  And the last thing I want is to feel the sting when someone I’d love to spend time with on my day gives a lame excuse why they can’t.

The plan for the moment is to meet my old flatmate and possibly another mate or two to watch the parade, then into Soho for a couple drinks.. after that, nothing planned.  Might go to the big picnic in the park in Vauxhall on the Sunday, but we’ll see.

*Sigh* I’ll let you know how the weekend turns out…

Happy Pride Weekend everyone!

stock-footage-animated-pride-flag-seamless-loop

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13 thoughts on “Why Pride Ruins My Birthday

  1. I am not a person who actually celebrates my own birthday, it’s just my issue about tye day. However it’s always a good excuse for you to have a party of some sorts. I hope you have a great one and an equally good weekend. How is work going btw? Ivan

    • The weekend had it’s ups and downs, and wasn’t as much fun as I’d imagined it might be (was on my way home by 8pm on Pride day and my birthday.. alone, of course). Work is.. well, not sure what’s going on there as I might be looking for a new job very soon, but fingers crossed I can at least hold out there for the summer. Long story really..

      • Thanks for the reply. My believe on work is that it’s only a job and sometimes we overthink it all. However we must do the best we can but not allow work to ruin our day to day lives. I still balance with that balance. Sorry your birthday was not an amazing day. Take care Ivan

      • Funny you mention over-thinking.. that’s what the post that just went up today is about LOL

        My birthday wasn’t horrible per se, it just could have been better. I still had fun during the afternoon with a mate and his partner (3rd wheel as always lol), but it was more the going home alone afterwards that wasn’t that fun. Oh well..

      • My wish for you as that when you least expect it you no longer go home alone again. May your partner be around the corner, sitting at the pub, on the train, don’t loose hope. Saying this relationship it self can be highly exhausting compromising is key. However I would have it no other way. Off to read your post Ivan

  2. I always struggled to celebrate my birthday as I planned things or had expectations above most and having a birthday at the beginning of February means it either pisses down or snows.

    This year (my 40th) was an exception though as a close friend got a group together to celebrate a meal in London and my other half took me to New York.

    I wouldn’t get hung up on Pride and the birthday clash. You could have your birthday on Christmas Day (as does a friend of mine “Carol”) or Feb 29th. Imagine what that would be like.

    Don’t let this get you do and remember whatever anyone else does or thinks it is your day.

    Have a fabulous birthday xxx

    • It isn’t so much the clash between my birthday and Pride, but more about how the only way I can get people together to celebrate is if it’s via Pride, not through my actual birthday..

      Sounds like your 40th was terrific.. much better than mine last year when I spent it bar-tending (for free) at a mate’s place in Coggeshall for their neighbour’s 60th birthday celebration. It was slightly bittersweet, since it was a milestone, but was still a nice evening overall.. even if it had nothing to do with my day.

  3. aguywithoutboxers

    Regardless of how you celebrate, it is YOUR special day! I hope it was good! A belated Happy Birthday wish just for you, buddy! Much love and naked hugs! 🙂

    • Thanks my friend. It had it good and bad moments.. may write about it, but we’ll see. Haven’t felt like writing much this past week.. need to get off my ass and back to it.

  4. Martin, I met you on that Sunday and I wish we hanged out more. I have not celebrated my birthday for nearly three years because my birthday fell in Ramdan including this year and I am always in Saudi during Ramdan. So I spend it alone. I am hoping not this year. Having said all that I am glad I hugged you and wished you a happy birthday. Yasser

    • I’m glad I got to see you and get your lovely hugs on my birthday as well, Yasser. To be honest, we hadn’t planned on being at RVT as much as we were, but was mostly due to the rain.. and I’m glad, because I loved the show and look forward to going back to see it again soon. 🙂 Hope you get to celebrate your birthday this year, and if you’re celebrating in London, hopefully I can return the birthday hugs x

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