...because we all have our motley moments!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Happy Birthday To Me

My last full-time job was working as an accountant in the basement of our local hospital. It was a small office of about 10 women and our male boss. Most of the ladies had degrees in accounting while mine was in business management. I was one of the youngest in the department, so I was the low-girl on the totem pole in lots of ways. The ladies were all very nice, but they kept to themselves. They didn't want to share any of the fun accounting work, so I got to do lots of grunt work, as my friend Natalie called it; think Cinderella forced to work for the IRS. One of my actual jobs was the laundry statistic for the Medicare cost report. Most of the other girls were your stereotypical accountants and were not really outgoing. One of my first ventures in my new department was to learn everyone's birthdays, which were not usually recognized or celebrated.

I started buying birthday cards and passed the card around for everyone to sign. I was quickly given the task of social director for the department, which meant birthday cards and holiday food days. I started working in the office in August, and my birthday was in May. The first year I worked there, someone was kind enough to buy me a card in return - not that it's all about that. By my second birthday in the office, I was in the middle of numerous failed infertility treatments, and I recently had braces put on my teeth. I get canker sores a lot, and my mouth was freaking out about all of the metal inside it. It was a severe allergic reaction to say the least. On my actual birthday, all of my coworkers forgot what day it was, and I ended up at my doctor's office getting my canker sores burnt over with silver nitrate sticks. It was so painful that I had tears running down my cheeks.

I was so mad at all of my coworkers. Short of quiting, I didn't know what to do, so I called my Aunt Barb for advice. She has always been my rock. I remember once when I was a teenager she took me out to eat just to spend time with me. She told me that no one at her office ever remembered her birthday either, so she sent herself an anonymous cake. She even gave me the number of her baker. I called and had a strawberry cake with butter cream icing delivered the very next day. It was decorated with pretty roses and read, "Happy Belated Birthday! You're the Best!" It was kind of an inside joke because they all thought I was the boss's favorite, which I was not, BTW. Would he forget his favorite employee's birthday, after all? When the cake was delivered, I acted so surprised. I thanked them profusely and begged them to tell me who sent it. It was hilarious, and I never told them I sent it.

The next year for my birthday, they surprised me with a food day in my honor cake and all.


Karly said...

I can't tell you how happy I was to get on this blog and not see "Just Do It!" on the top!!

I have no shame when it comes to telling people it is my birthday. I am a pretty forgetful person, and I apppreciate when other people remind me about their birthdays. I'll just say something like, "I can't make it to the meeting because my husband is taking me out for my birthday." I also enjoy buying my own birthday presents.

But I like the cake idea! I've never thought of that one!

Liz said...

Pam, that is hilarious. I love that you never told them you did it. I can just imagine how confused they still are!

Donna said...

I think maybe you missed your theatrical calling, Pam! That is too funny! Begging them to tell you who sent it? Hilarious!

I agree with Karly. We all need reminders for pretty much EVERYTHING when just keeping up with the family can be an overwhelming task!

Sorry for my lack of post on Saturday, girls. No, it wasn't the pressure of following Karly's lusty post on Friday...I just got really busy and forgot to write something! Hey!...it happens to the best of us, and I'm only somewhere in the mediocre range! I don't know what Rachel's excuse is, but it's probably better than mine.

Rachel said...

Love this story! The year I turned 30 I was at a new school and nobody knew that it was my birthday. I was miserable all day feeling forgotten even though there was really no reason for anyone to have known it was a special day for me. Next time, I'm sending myself a cookie bouquet.

As for my absence yesterday, sorry everyone, but my excuse isn't really that great. Simply put, I had nothin'. I considered writing an article titled, "I got nothin'" and then rambling for a few paragraphs about having nothing to say, but people seemed to be enjoying Karly's article so much I decided to just let them comment some more! ;) I will try to come up with something brilliant for next Sunday!

Jason and Fawnda said...

When I was a teacher I would make my student open their planner (given by the school so everyone had one) and open to the MOST IMPORTANT DAY in the school year April 25th... once they all had it open I would tell them it was my birthday and make them write it down and tell them that I accept flowers, candy and gift cards! Some kids would even get me stuff! I also would keep a count down to my birthday on the board... I love my birthday and have no shame in letting others know it is on the way! :) And I like to think of April as my Birthday Month and celebrate as much as I can!
Happy birthday to you!

Maria said...

You are so funny! BTW, when IS your birthday???

Liz said...

May 7, the day after mine! ;)