Crazy how the one month of the year that was my absolute favorite is now the one that is filled with fear and sadness.
For as long as I can remember July was simply the best 31 days one could ever imagine. My mom played no games when it came to my birthday and therefore felt like the only legitimate way to celebrate my life was to do so for all 31 days. I was born on the 15th, but the other 16 days were just as special.
Growing up my mom and I would do something special every single day in July. Getting two pair of shoes at the mall instead of one, having dessert before dinner, staying up an extra hour on a Friday night were all the norm simply because it was my “birthday month.”
I honestly thought all children had this luxury until I got older and people were like, “For real? Everyday?!”
I mean, “why not?” I thought. After all life is a celebration.
This “treat yourself, because you deserve it” tradition was something I looked forward to year after year.
But on the 25th celebration of my 31st 31 day long birthday party, my favorite person in the world left this world.
It came without warning and July nor life would ever be the same.
I now dreaded turning another year, celebrating another birthday and planning another party.
Knowing that the Hallmark card my mother religiously sent wouldn’t come and the morning phone call that always began with, “Happy Birthday to my favorite daughter!” (I was her only daughter P.S.) wouldn’t happen was far too devastating to even imagine.
However despite it all I’ve pulled through two birthdays without her now. And after this last birthday I decided that I’m no longer willing to fear the feelings that July will forever bring.
I will celebrate the memories, create new ones and do just what my mother taught me to do: “treat myself because I deserve it.”
So to honor this commitment I recently remade my birthday outfit from the first birthday I had without her in 2014. Every detail attached to a meaning.
Denim, because it is classic like my mother always was. Buttons because this was the first sewing lesson that she taught me. And the crop top because it would require me to look at something I loved, take it apart and redesign it step by step. So while this look may look the same, it is ever so slightly different.
I can say all the above is true when it comes to the Robbie I am after July 25, 2013. Redesigned. Different, even though I look the same. And above all else, determined to be a person who is unafraid to celebrate life. No matter what it may bring.