Right after I broke up with my first boyfriend, my mom took me to get my nails done in an attempt to put an end to my intense moping session. As I sat there struggling to maintain a conversation, I noticed the renewal date on the nail tech's license: November 20th. His birthday. It sent me for more of a loop than I care to admit, put a sick pit in my stomach, just another thing to bring him to the front of my mind when I was trying so desperately to shove him to the back.

Time changes things. Today, he's so far in the back of my mind, I didn't even remember that today was his birthday until it popped up on Facebook.

But now I have a new birthday to dread: March 21st, which should be just another fucking day, but I know I'll wonder what you're doing, how you're celebrating, if you're happy. And I wonder if you'll wonder the same things when my summer birthday rolls around, or if you'll even remember June 30th.

They say when you move far from home and make a new home, you'll never not be homesick again. When I'm here, I miss Arizona. When I go home to Arizona, I miss Connecticut. There's no place that's fully home anymore.

It's the same thing when you love a person. Once you do, you'll never not give a shit on their birthday. It makes me want to never ask another person their birthday. It makes me want to erase birthdays from the planet. It makes me want to obliterate calendars, stop giving months and days significance altogether.

But even without a calendar, there will always be something else to remind me. Chocolates and caramels, the same as your eyes; a helicopter overhead; whiskey cokes; tins of chewing tobacco; so many songs on the radio. And although I know this is the right thing, it's hard not to feel that little twinge when you creep up.

But hey, you're not the worst thing I've ever survived. In a few years I won't think of your birthday when it passes by, the same way I don't think about the calories in sour cream or beer, the same way November 20th is now just another day.


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