Today I turned 51

“Monday, it’s your birthday” means you and your family and/or friends will exchange birthday wishes for the upcoming year and for the great year that has passed. “Christmas is your birthday?” Now that’s an entirely different situation.
When I was much younger, I was convinced that all the merriment, the trees, the lights, the gifts and family gatherings were all to celebrate me. Yeah, I know it’s a little fantastical, but we never celebrated anyone’s else birthday with the same sort of fanfare. So, what was I supposed to think? Raised an only child. Spending most of my formative years with either adults or children much younger than me, made for a confusing time. Christmas day as the only tween in the family or as the only person under 25 years old naturally caused much of the attention to be on me. The younger neices & nepews were at least 10+ years younger and they all had each other. One set included 4 sisters & the other was a sister and a brother. All the while I’m over here like, what about me?
I learned early on how to navigate, ok, manipulate the setting to work in my favor. Some called it spoiled, I called it loved. That’s what you do when you know you’re adopted. “They” chose me. The cousins were “stuck” with their kids. Therefore, I could easily conclude I had the advantage. I had the upper hand and here’s my time to cash in. If you are thinking “damn, that’s a pretty messed up why to look at the holidays”, I will agree. Hindsight is so much clearer.
Getting married young; 18 and having the first kid at 20, followed quickly by 2 more by the time I was 23, did in the immortal words of the “Fresh Prince of Bel Aire” my world was flipped turned upside down. No longer could I allow the holidays to be about me. No more would the celebration or the gatherings have yours truly as the center of attention. Wow, talk about having your world flipped upside down, but I had no alternative. My babies were way more important than me. Seeing them happy was a the greatest joy I could imagine.

Fast forward several years. The boys are grown and have family’s of there own, and me, well depression sucks. My current state causes me mass amounts of anxiety and a reason to withdraw. Add to the fact they all live 2 hours away, and I’m completely overwhelmed. Do not think I take for granted the loving relationship and the desire to be the coolest “Papa Marky” that ever lived as trivial. As much as I love my older boys, the grandkids make my heart flutter. They are beautiful, amazing, funny, stubborn, opinionated, and loving. In them I see an immense amount of fortitude and personality, just like their dads. As I was always the center of attention growing up, I now want the make them the center of attention. My birthday, on Christmas, means very little to me now.
My one and only hope is that one day, I can learn to deal with my depression so that my grandkids receive my full attention. They already have my unwavering, neverending, undying love, and are my greatest joy. To AJ, Timmy, Lily-bean, Daxton & Niko, your papa Marky love you beyond words & can only hope you grasp on to the love and concern your daddies have for you. I want this to be a generational understanding; the babies come first. No matter how old you are, the youngest among us deserves the greatest attention.
What started out as a self-focused, selfish time of year, has become the greatest time of year to focus on the kiddo’s. To my kids, I love you and am so proud of you. To my grandkids, you are my world, and I want the best life has to offer you.
Papa Marky loves you.
I just wish I could love myself.

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About Markus
Self confessed MisFit trying to get through life. Christ Follower,Father,Papaw,Musician. A realist who is enjoying becoming lost in the right direction

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