A Christmas Birthday?

Ever wonder what it is like to have your birthday on Christmas Day? Well, I can tell you a bit about that! Can you guess why??!

I was born December 25, 1963. I am the youngest of 5 children and I am told that the contractions started Christmas Eve. My parents put the kids to bed and then my dad had to drive to Detroit to get my aunt to babysit (we lived in Livonia, look it up, it’s the center of the universe 😉 ).

So baby #5 is on the way and Dad is going to go pick up the babysitter…oh and did I mention there was snow? Yes, a snow storm (not one of the top 25 worst snowstorms in Detroit’s history, thankfully). I can’t imagine how my mother survived that wait. This was in the days before I-96 would take you downtown in 10-15 minutes, this was stop lights, traffic and snow. It had to be at least an hour or two before he got back to her.

NOT actual footage of my dad clearing the way for his car to take mom to the hospital

Well, thankfully they made it. Neither could remember much about the drive, but my dad always told me that when they were checking my mom in to labor and delivery, they asked him how old my mom was. His response was that he honestly couldn’t tell them because mom always withheld that info or at least changed the number as she saw fit – fyi, she still does that to this day and she is 87!

Jeanne’s mom, Grandma Tess, August 2021, 87 years young

I was born shortly after midnight and then my dad then had to go home to put the Christmas gifts together and under the tree. Not sure how that Christmas morning went – no mom there to “make breakfast”, (remember, this is 1963!).

As a child, my parents always had us celebrate my birthday with my sister, her’s is on December 19. This helped prevent the “this-is-for-your-birthday-and-Christmas gift” syndrome that sometimes happens with well intentioned friends and family.

The one really special thing that I remember happening every year, even until about 13 years ago when we moved out of Michigan, was that I was always given a special cake for my birthday. When I was little and we celebrated at my Grandma and Grandpa Scicluna’s house (in the basement to accommodate the entire family – 30ish people) I was given a small, individual cake with 1 candle on it. So sweet. Over the years it progressed to a delicious homemade coconut cake, made by our neighbor, Mrs. Bush. THE BEST CAKE EVER!

I am happy to report that now my own family takes the responsibility of properly celebrating my birthday very seriously (that’s a little over the top, isn’t it? Sorry). They are all careful to not use Christmas paper to wrap my gifts, to have a separate time of gift giving and birthday-partying. My husband makes me my new favorite cake (sticky toffee pudding- it’s a cake, and it’s amazing!). They do a fantastic job and they don’t even mock me for wearing a crown every year!

Queen for the day every December 25th, like it or not!

What you may not realize about this strange birthday is that I get reminded of it ALL year long. Think about it, whenever you have to give your DOB for the dentist, the car insurance or credit card company, the lab technician, etc., they all comment on it. “Oh, wow! A Christmas baby!” or “bet you get ripped off on your birthday!” or “what’s it like to share a birthday with Jesus?” all to which I nod my head and say (almost) nothing. 🙂

Oh, and did I tell you that my husband’s birthday is New Year’s Eve? Seriously! I mean “talk about getting a tax deduction just in time…..”

Cheers!

featured image: cake created by @happy.clementine, Eun Park

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