Usually All I Want to Do is Eat.
This year, Shane starts middle school. Dylan starts high school. We are having a year of serious transitions.
Luckily the schools have realized that these are “big” years, and they’ve scheduled a half-day orientation for both 6th and 9th grades. The boys will get up in the morning and ride the bus to school, just as they will on the first day – with the notable and significant exception that the older students who attend the schools will not be there.
So Shane, who has never taken a school bus, will be able to have one somewhat peaceful ride. And Dylan, who was shuttled 45 minutes each way in a car last year, will be able to experience a much, much shorter ride. They will both have their schedules and be home by noon – something that makes me incredibly happy.
Something should make me incredibly happy, because Orientation Day is also My Birthday.
A lot of people like to overlook their birthdays, especially as the infernal aging sets in. But I see it as a day where, quite frankly, I can do whatever I want.
Of course I am old, so usually all I want to do is eat.
But I do not want to send my kids off to orientation. I am already sad enough about the prospect of sending them back to school. I don’t need the added emphasis on their transitions on this particular day.
So I am planning to take myself out for breakfast. Because I have signed up for every email list known to man, I am inundated with “free entree” coupons every year. One year, I just spent the entire day (while the kids were at school) running around, spending birthday coupons.
For lunch, I will pick up another free entree – although I will save it for the next day, because I will be too full from breakfast. Then, the kids and I will go to Ben & Jerry’s for my free ice cream cone.
And I will pick up my personally designed tie-dyed ice cream cake. (I get $3 off because it’s my birthday. Ben & Jerry’s gives out two coupons every year.)
In the evening, I will have my mother’s spaghetti sauce. The woman is a saint, and makes it for me every year. And then I will go to the parent orientation meeting at the high school, because I wouldn’t miss that for anything in the world. Even though I already know everything.
So I will eat like a swine and then, as I do every year, I will wait for the school year to start and then I will go back to the gym. I will plan to go every day, to work out furiously five days a week, until I lose 20 pounds.
And by next spring, I will be much more fit and even eating more healthily – although mysteriously those 20 pounds will still be with me – until summer comes.
And then I will stop working out and eat too much all summer long, culminating with my self-indulgent birthday fest, at which point I will decide to go back to the gym and attempt to lose those same 20 pounds.
I love my birthday. Even if no one else does.