Merry Birthday

As a boy, growing up, I never had the same birthday experiences as everyone else. I never had a birthday party on my actual birthday, and I never had that random day in the middle of the year where I got gifts and ate cake.

 I was born on December 25th, 2003, and my mother still tells me stories about how the doctor that delivered me gave me to her in a stocking. She says that, although birthing a baby on Christmas is exciting, she had a fear that my birthday would always be overshadowed. 

After February 29th, December 25th is the least common birthday in America. Most people have a whole list of cool people sharing their birthdays, but for me, it’s only Jimmy Buffett.

 My day has always been something unique and rare about me. My Christmas birthday has always been a reliable conversation starter. Reviving a dead conversation becomes easier when you have an abnormal birthday to talk about. Think about all the people you’ve ever told about your birthday, and then imagine constantly having to answer questions about it. Through the 16 years of my life, I’ve gotten countless reactions to my birthday, and surprisingly, they are extremely similar. 

The Skeptic: These people never believe that I’m born on Christmas. Their usual first question is, “You’re born on Christmas? Or just AROUND December 25th?” After confirming that I was actually born on the 25th, these people always want some sort of proof. To them, a Christmas baby is something so rare, it’s impossible. Christmas babies universally will always have to deal with the skeptics that simply think they are being tricked.  5% of reactions.

The Double Presents: These are by far the most common types of people. Their usual first reaction is, “Wait . . . do you get double presents?” Many Christmas babies are subject to the Christmas double up. Meaning that, instead of having birthday and Christmas gifts, they would receive the “Christmas and birthday gift.” To answer their question, I received Christmas presents just like everyone else. On Christmas Day, I would usually get a birthday gift from my parents. My parents claim that they vowed when I was born that they would never enlist this cruel punishment to a kid. No, I do not open double presents on Christmas. No, I do not get less than average gifts in a calendar year. Instead, the gifts just happen to come on one day, rather than two separate times of the year. This does have its downsides, however, Christmas babies only get to unwrap presents one day of the year. 70% of reactions.

Negative Nancy: The Negative Nancies are usually adults, or just mean kids. Their usual first reaction is, “You’re born on Christmas? That must SUCK. I would HATE if my birthday was on Christmas.” These people would usually tell me some story about how their second cousin’s aunt’s neighbor has a birthday on December 22nd, and they hate it. Rather than being positive about a unique aspect of my life, Negative Nancies jump to conclusions about how all my birthdays are eternally ruined. Negative Nancies assume that everyone born in late December must hate their lives. They usually suggest that I have my birthday celebration on June 25th, signaling my half birthday. While Christmas babies may have gotten the short end of the stick, it is much more special and enjoyable than Negative Nancies presume. 20% of reactions.

Mr. (or Mrs.) Lazy Birthday: These people are dumbfounded by the idea that I will most likely never have to go to work on my birthday, and I’ll never go to school. I’m sure my mom appreciated the fact that she never had to bring 35 birthday cupcakes to a class of first graders. Most people get lucky by having their birthday fall on a Friday or Saturday once every seven years. For me, my birthday has always been in the middle of winter break for school. When asked, “What is the best part of having a Christmas birthday,” I usually go to this point. Unless I become a doctor, like the one that helped deliver me 16 years ago, I will be off work on my birthday for life. Mr. Lazy Birthdays love the idea that I can be lazy on my birthday, and they usually seem jealous by the fact. 5% of reactions.

Very rarely, do any responses differ from the four categories. Christmas babies worldwide can attest to the fact that our special days have a fair share of ups and downs. A bunch of people have their birthdays around Christmas time, but there is something different about December 25th that no one else understands. I hit the birthday jackpot, and it’s a part of my identity. Everyone has that one thing that is unique about them. Some people are colorblind or have a birthmark in the shape of a heart, but for me, my birthmark is the stocking I was delivered in 16 years ago. Being a Christmas baby has the obvious downsides, but it will forever be something special that I cherish.

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