A glance at the keywords used in search engines to find this blog clearly shows that the topic of Christmas Time Birthdays (CTB’s) is heating up. My addition to the CTB genre was My Christmas time Birthday (December 21, 2006 – the date of the blog entry, not the date of my birthday).
If you type “Christmas time birthday” into Google, my blog comes up as the very first entry, and this is of course thrilling. I am pleased to have provided information for those who are actively searching for ways to deal with the CTB situation. Presumably these are all kind people who are seeking creative suggestions for ways to enliven and enrich the birthday experience for CTB people so that we will not feel ignored and slighted and therefore become bitter and twisted. I assume that the selfish people looking to cut corners wouldn’t be doing such searches and have already sent off their insidious For Your Christmas-time Birthday combo cards.
One of my daughter’s friends has a CTB that typically falls at a time when her mother is out of town at the MLA conference. For that reason and because a lot of friends are also out of town, my daughter’s friend gets to pick whatever day she wants to celebrate her birthday and have a party. She typically chooses a day in February or March, and she is happy with that because she feels as if she has two special days.
One of my grad students also has a CTB. When we were talking about this the other day, he brought up a positive aspect of his CTB. He said that when he was a kid, he loved having a CTB because he would get presents that would be too expensive for any one holiday but that were OK for a ‘double’ event. This is how he got a Nintendo as a kid. Such thoughts did not occur to my parents, who tended to give me socks for my CTB. Maybe it is not too late for my mom to talk to his mom. Last year, my mother gave me a nautical-themed dishtowel for my birthday.
But of course this is not really about presents and attention and so on, although some of it is.
As I wrote last year, I am now very fond of my CTB because my family and I always go on a trip somewhere interesting. It is hard to feel distraught about getting a nautical-themed dishtowel for your birthday when you are spending the day on a beach in the Algarve or climbing Mayan pyramids in the Yucatan, and this year promises to be just as fun.
I am fortunate that I get to travel and enjoy my birthday in an interesting place. The #2 item on Google for CTB keywords is an article about how hard it is for people without much money to provide a festive day for their CTB kids. It is possible to have a fun and happy day without a lot of gifts, and it is also possible – and essential – to avoid making your child feel like they are a problem because of the timing of their birthday.
8 months ago