Birthdays aren't happy anymore [Pulse Contributor's Opinion]

Birthdays! A special day for the celebration of life. A day to look at your life's journey. How far you’ve come, how far you’re going, and where you are.

Birthdays aren't happy anymore

Growing up, birthdays were moments we used to be ecstatic for. But as we outgrew the warm embrace of childhood & adolescence something changed.

Unlike our juvenile days when birthdays were all about candles, cakes, balloons, and clowns. After stepping into a wilderness called adulthood, there is an added feature to the days we celebrate our birth: An added guest to the party, Anxiety.

I ran a brief survey in my quest to know why. How and where did this huge insecurity about our age come from?

And a conclusion I came to, is that it is relative to different people.

You see, with every nerve of anxiety surging at the mere mention of one's age is an unfulfilled goal or an unsatisfied desire.

A young lady in her late 20s is insecure to celebrate her 30th birthday because she isn't married yet.

A young boy is ashamed to publicly celebrate his birthday because he hasn't gained admission into college.

A woman in her 40s will rather be silent on her birthdays because she doesn't have kids.

A man wouldn't celebrate his birthday because he hasn't landed that dream job.

All these because we put unimaginable, insurmountable, and unnecessary pressure on ourselves to have hit certain milestones (sometimes unrealistic) at certain stages of our lives.

It's good to have goals and set deadlines to achieve those dreams, but we should also keep an open mind that some things are just beyond our control.

Most times, the anxiety is rightly justified. You might be in a certain place in your life right now where you never saw yourself a year ago. I am a huge example

the sooner we realise and begin to act on the blunt fact that ‘somethings are beyond our direct control’, the more gentle we become on ourselves as we grow and age.

The title of this article is ‘Birthdays Aren’t Happy Anymore’.

Now that may sound bleak for those who still look forward to blowing candles and receiving gifts, doing photoshoots, and all the festivities of birthdays

But for us who spend our birth dates, weeks, and months anticipating a certain age and being anxious about the uncertainty it brings forth.

I hope we can live without attaching this heavy wall clock over our heads.

I hope we can give ourselves air to breathe,

I wish we can outgrown the anxiety that comes with the +1s.

I wish we could just live.

Call me Israel.

Film & Music Critic. Aspiring Author and Filmmaker Who’s studying Fisheries & Aquatic Biology in College.

Follow me on IG



Pulse Contributors is an initiative to highlight diverse journalistic voices. Pulse Contributors do not represent the company Pulse and contribute on their own behalf.


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