Tuesday, June 30, 2009

First Bald Birthday Since 1982

I am now a 27-year-old. Did I think this is what I would be going through at this point in my life? No. But I'll now forever treasure every birthday that I'm given and I'm sure that this one will stick out in my mind as the first one celebrated bald since 1982. 

It was a vertical weekend meaning I wanted to do everything I could to make the most of it. I love going into the city and was looking forward to a day of open air markets and the city hustle bustle, but was bumming knowing that I'd never be able to handle walking the blocks after blocks that I would want to walk. So I slept in on Saturday (that is until 9 a.m. ... even with cancer I can't waste a weekend morning). When I woke up, Craig had the day planned. We'd drive into the city and take a hop-on, hop-off 
"topless fun bus" as he called it. Turns out everyone kept their tops on, but it was fun. We were able to see so much of the city, learn random factoids, spend time at the places that we wanted to and fly past those that we didn't from the vantage point of an open-top double decker bus: a perfect solution to my endurance problem.  

The day was perfect. We found a
massive, 8-block long open air market with lots of booths to poke through and street meat to eat. We witnessed a sudden and torrential downpour while in Times Square and watched two young lovers scale the TKTS steps soaked and get more soaked making out like a music a video with an audience of hundreds huddled under overhangs. We saw a guy dressed as Spongebob get arrested. We saw a man-made beach complete with a Tiki bar, sunbathers and kids making sand castles in the midst of South Street Seaport and a b-boy group with super-human ab strength. Only in New York. 

I'd been looking forward to Thai food for a very long time and on Sunday I certainly got my birthday wish. We went to my favorite, East West Grille, a former dining car-turned Thai-Lao getaway plopped inbetween the car dealerships and shopping plazas of New Park Ave. Most all of my girlz and most all of their other halves  made it out for a delicious spread of curries and pad thais. The 13 of us 
took over the patio. Craig and Tom even went down to the basement with the waitress to bring up extra tables ... we most certainly gave them a Sunday business boost. It was so good to see everyone --- from Mass, New York and all sides of CT, we all converged over spiciness and shrimp crackers. I laughed, a lot, as is usual with our crew and just basked in the sun and the warmth of our friendship. And the yellow curry with three kinds of tofu? Amazing. 

The actual day of my birth, the 29th, fell on Monday and I decided that as a present to myself I was going to go into the office. I was feeling good and I wanted to get dressed in a collared shirt and business skirt and feel like a grown-up for the day. I literally had to dust a spider web off of my Vera Wang heels --- haven't worn anything but flip flops and moccasins in a long time. I even broke out the iron; I was surprised I could find it. Most try to get out of work on their birthday, but for me, it was my reward for a very tough week last week --- I could be normal for a day. Little did I know that my co-workers knew it was my birthday so I was surprised with a pizza party. It felt great to catch up with everyone, sit through a meeting and get the chance to catch up with projects and on life with my director. 

Then last night, was my family party. Can you tell I like to stretch out a birthday? The fam came over and my mom and Craig tackled the food --- grilled salmon and steak, a birthday surf and turf. The night was beautiful so we all sat out on the porch, marveled at Sammy's skills with the tennis ball and just enjoyed each other's company. 
My mom made Funfetti cupcakes (my fav) and in them were candles to blow out. This year I started making my wishes as soon as the notes of "Happy Birthday" began. I have so much to wish for and so much to be thankful for at the same time. Everyone waited patiently as I continued my list of wishes in silence then finally got to blowing out the flames. There's magic in that wax, I know it. 


  1. How beautiful... I'm so glad you had a good time! I really wish I could have been there on Sunday... next time! That NYC trip looks really great, Craig is so thoughtful! You are a lucky girl, and we are all lucky to count you as one of our best friends :) Love you, miss you

  2. Hey Karin,

    I just love to hear about your vertical days. Just keep believing that your vertical days will wash away the dread and memory of the cellar days.
    Your Hubby sounds like a gem, your dog looks like a big, wagging bundle of love and I think you are more beautiful bald than a peacock in a poultry farm.!!
    I need to have your email..got a little something for ya from the Southwest staff...us old timers keep tabs on all "our kids" and you and your kin were definitely one of our favorite parts of teaching.
    Email me with your addy...shogan04@snet.net.

    Love ya and sending positive thoughts your way..your favorite elem. P.E. teacher ever!

    Mrs. H.