Melodramatic Birthday Musings

So here I stand, on the precipice overlooking that funny thing called adulthood. In a scant few hours, my age will have three syllables and people will expect different things of me. My family makes a big deal out of ages that are prime, or perfect squares or cubes, and this is the first prime in a long time. Other than that, seventeen isn’t really a big deal. Nothing changes legally. (Well, I’ll be allowed into R-rated movies, but it’s not like I wasn’t going to those anyway before.) Still can’t vote (and don’t get me started on how frustrating that timing is). Still can’t die for my country, or smoke, or get a tattoo (all things I don’t particularly intend to do ever, but still).

But there’s something vaguely synesthetic about that number that scares me. Look at it: 17. For one thing, it’s odd. Odd numbers are somehow sharper, more aggressive and intimidating. Seven is the most extreme of those, with its pinched-up, cunning face. If seventeen were a person, it’d wear studded denim jackets and carry a pocketknife and a comb in the same sleeve. It’d bum soggy cigarettes off strangers, and grind their smoldering remnants into a puddle with a pointy cowboy boot. It’d drive a pickup at night with AC/DC turned up to eleven.

So I’m a little bit afraid of it. Maybe part of that has to do with the totally unfeasible timeline my eleven-year-old self imagined for my future: I distinctly remember thinking, “Okay, deal with that whole global warming thing by eighteen, and then become a vet.” Or maybe it’s really about college apps, or something else entirely. Whatever the reason, I am definitely not looping The Sound of Music and mourning my inner child tonight, no sir.

My inner child is just fine, thanks, and she’s wearing a crown to school tomorrow.

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2 thoughts on “Melodramatic Birthday Musings

  1. Let me be one of the first (or maybe not first depending on when you read this post) to say: happy birthday! You’re going to be seventeen – the “forgotten” birthday, the one that tends to be ignored due to being sandwiched between 16 and 18. But for me, every birthday is just as important and unimportant. All are exactly the same degree of “scary” because well… birthdays just feel like change and change is scary. Or they are a benchmark of how much you’ve done and how much you haven’t been able to accomplish. And that’s even more frightening.

    Nevertheless, hope you have an awesome birthday! 😀

    P.S.: You’re wearing a crown tomorrow?! Awesome!

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