Wednesday, June 4, 2008

my birthday

   My birthday has always been emotional for me.  In my family, we were raised with an expectation of feeling very special on your birthday.  Of being the queen for the day (in my case at least--my brothers were never really encouraged to be queens, I guess).  It was the day that was all mine.  

   I remember being just a little first-grader, happily wearing my purple koolots (sp?) from the ever-so-classy Fairfield Variety, and greatly anticipating the big surprise my parents had planned for my birthday.  It was a school day, but this surprise had been talked up so much, not even that could dim the day.  My mom sent me off in the car with my pop and brothers saying, There's going to be a really special surprise for you today. This was going to be a good day, I knew it. At our snack break, I opened my brown bag and saw a little note that said, Happy Birthday! Your surprise is coming! Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow.  Finally, it was lunch time and my teacher told the class to go outside cause there was a special visitor guessed it--me. What was is it, you ask?  Just about the best kind of visitor a first-grader could hope for.  A large, furry, purple bear was waiting outside for me.  He had balloons.  He was funny and kind and there just for me.  My parents were there, too (I guess someone had to foot the bill for this purple bear--I haven't done all the research, but I would bet they don't come cheap).  Plus, he was holding a miniature stuffed bear that he gave to me to always remember that day.  I still have that purple bear.  And I can still see myself in my mind's eye, thoroughly enjoying the company of that bear (if you have ever met my niece, Cosette, then you can imagine what I looked like.  Just place a full-grown purple bear next to her, and you get a pretty good picture of the surprise). Everyone had cake, and I had my bear. It was very special.  

  Now, I may not have any purple bears involved in my birthday, but I still feel loved.  How couldn't I when Drew flies all the way out from Delaware to be with me?  When my parents send me chocolate-covered strawberries and books authored by my favorite writers?  When my friend Erin makes me jewelry? When I go to Disneyland with  Drew, Jase, Lyric, and Ollie? When Darby gives me a perfect yellow clutch (yellow, cause she knows I have been somewhat obsessed with that color for a good while now)? When I get phone calls and texts from family and friends--about half of them singing to me from miles away? When I get numerous comments on facebook and myspace, just wishing me love and joy?  

  And here's another thing.  So, yesterday the sadder part of my birthday was that I had to say good bye to Drew right before I went to the theatre. To work.  On my birthday (I still kind of feel like nobody should ever do anything they don't want to do on their birthday. You know, queen for a day, and all that). I was already fighting tears, when I walked into my dressing room and found a huge poster covering my mirror with these words on it, We Love Jessica Because...And then the cast had written out different things they loved about me.  See, I had told my housemate, Gabby, that at home with each family birthday, we all get together and say what we like about the birthday girl or boy.  I said that was one of my favorite things about my birthday.  So, she made this poster and had the cast sneak into her dressing room at different times to write kind words on it.  Well, once I read that, it was over. I cried. But happily--and a little sadly because of the whole good bye thing with Drew.  

  Then, my friend, John, planned an outing for my birthday right after the show.  We all went to this place on Sunset Blvd and I was surrounded by friends and laughter.  It was a really good time.  I feel loved and so blessed.  And it was another very good birthday.  


Mom said...

So glad your birthday was special even though you are so far away!

peaj said...

You, dear girl, are working with some very cool folks. That was so very sweet of them, and you can tell them I said so (yeah, they'll care). ;)

I have the same attitude toward my birthday, and usually take the day off. Last few years my birthday has been near a weekend, so I have been taking a couple of days off around the weekend and making it a birthday weekend. I hope that by the time I retire I'll have a birthday month going.

Gosh, Erin - haven't talked to her in a coon's age.

You looked like Cosy does? Do you mean actual physical features, or that sweet, innocent girl face she's got going on? I actually don't remember how you looked as a child (sorry). I have this impression of you looking not much changed from how you look now, but I might be wrong.

I'm glad you had a good birthday. Oh, and it is culottes

P.S.: I would have posted sooner, but I had to wait for mom to post first.

Jessica Latshaw said...

hahaha--never would have guessed that spelling! I don't know exactly how long a coon's age is, but it sounds pretty long to go without talking so her...sorry about that--she's so very cool! You can find her on myspace if you're on it:-)

oh, and Cosi looks a lot like me. Starting with her baby pics on up! And she does have us all fooled with that innocent little girl act!

And why not just go for the whole birthday month? That sounds like a great idea to me:-)

erin said...

Jessica! I love you soooo much. It was great to talk to you today. I'm so glad you felt special on your birthday!!! xxxooo

erin said...

And one more thing... I love the way you write. You had me hooked with your purple bear story! I kept asking, "what's the surprise?!! Is it a trip to the carnival? An MC Hammer T-shirt? A Paula Abdul video?!!" The suspense was killing me! But nothing beats the purple bear. What if when you walked into your dressing room the other day, Drew had been dressed as a purple bear?...:)

KathieK said...

I am glad you had such a wonderful and happy birthday, Jess! I already know you have a pretty special family, but it's nice to know you are working with some pretty special people, too. That was a really thoughtful thing they did for you. Blessings on your head!

jason said...

It was so awesome that you happened to be in LA for your birthday. Thanks for gracing us with your presence for your Birthday Eve!

Jenna said...

I'm so happy you had a great birthday! And i bet you looked hot while you were out celebrating it while wearing some large marge accessories!

Jessica Latshaw said...

Well, I certainly wore the Large Marge accessories today--and it was smokin!

Erin, it was sooo great to talk to you today--I loved it! I love all your comments, too--and if Drew were dressed as a large purple bear in my dressing room...Well, it would have been a blending of perfection.

Jenna, come to LA--I already said it, but it bears mention again: you +me+ + Jase=Buffy/Faith/Xander-style.

Jase, still thinking about the Blue Bayou and how delicous that was!