My very first birthday party happened when I turned 40. I never got one as a kid. No friends over for games, no party hats, no special tablecloths with matching napkins, no goodie bags, and no balloons.
My sisters had several birthday parties...I've seen the photos. They wore white dresses with their lacy dress socks and black patent leather shoes. They got party hats and the tables were filled with friends and presents. Toothless smiles all the way around.
It's difficult to reconcile the differences of our childhood years. I can't really explain why I never got to go to cotillion or modeling school. Or why no one in my family ever showed up for my auditions, plays, tryouts or awards dinners.
I know, I know. My cumulative experience helped shape me into the woman I am today. Yada, yada, yada.
That being said, it would have been nice for someone to have believed in me.
I intend to do better with my kids. I won't be perfect and I'm sure that they'll criticize us for all the things we didn't do when they are older and feeling sorry for themselves and their plight in life.
That's human nature, isn't it? It's our path to grow up and blame our parents for all that they didn't do, all that we didn't have, all that we didn't become. I have friends who had everything. Loving, supportive parents, plenty of money to put them into the sports team or lessons of their whim. And yet they point the finger and complain and make excuses.
I realize that no one really gets a perfect childhood. And where mine may have lacked in certain areas, I'm sure that I must have had an abundance of other things...other than my escapism daydreams spent while hiding in my bedroom closet.