The somewhat belated ABM
I’m sure I posted previously about the Annual Birthday Missive, which I’ve now given the fairly bad-looking abbreviation above. It’s become that much of a ‘thing’ that it can have an abbreviation. This year I intended to write it on the night of Friday, 22 July. I intended to do a lot of things that night that I didn’t. That night, I was a bit busy.
That night was the night before my wedding, when we introduced all the families to each other at the Royal Hotel’s bar. A cheesy singer came on and everyone danced. I left much later than I’d intended and came home to finish a big list of wedding preparations that still needed to be done. I was cooking, printing, and sewing. That night was a bit of a blur. I just remember sending one last lot of things to the printer around 3:30 or 4 am and deciding I needed to go to bed.
My 32nd birthday started after about three hours of sleep. An hour or two later, after more cooking, my bridesmaid (the very humble Vivienne) came over armed with a birthday gift of a box of chocolates and a chilled small bottle of prosecco. ‘In case you needed a drink this morning, I thought that would be a good size,’ she said. (Though I didn’t drink it, I did consider drinking it just because it was cold.)
I thought about writing a whole big thing about the wedding. How I arrived and didn’t trip, how I walked into the room with a huge smile to a Miles Davis version of ‘Summertime’, how I was asked if I like pussycats and if a live version of ‘Breed’ was the right song. I could write about the day and all the small things that have flowed together as my memory of an amazing day.
I don’t want to, though.
My annual birthday missive has always been about where my life stands. On my 32nd birthday, I became a new person. I became Jennifer Marie Mclevey, wife of the amazing Adam Lee Mclevey. I officially started a new life, and I think it might be one in which I don’t need to write an annual open letter to whoever cares to listen.
On my 32nd birthday, I married a guy who cares enough to listen almost every day (there are days I don’t even want to listen to myself). I don’t need to write something once a year, hoping that I’ll get a few replies and that at least one of them won’t piss me off or totally misunderstand the point of what I’m doing. I don’t need to desperately write in some vain hope of getting attention. (I still want attention. A name change hasn’t changed me that much.)
So I think this ABM marks the end of what the Annual Birthday Missive has been, because it marks the start of a new life. My 32nd birthday was the best day of my life and I thank everyone who was there and everyone who helped make it all come together. And most of all, I thank Adam for marrying me.
Here’s a photo of us and our wedding party.