If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Pumpkin Turns 21

Today is Pumpkin's birthday. She is 21 and legal. This is such a big deal for the younger crowd. Angel has been counting the days since he turned 18 and he still has over a year to go. It insults his sense of self that he is not allowed to order a beer in a bar. Personally I agree. In my day it was 18. At 18 you were allowed to vote, drink, marry and serve in the army. Today at 18 you can do all but drink. If the age limit in fact deterred DUIs I would agree with it, but it doesn't so I find it a stupid law. Worse, it seems to create this expectation that one MUST go out and get falling down drunk on the night you turn 21. I don't like falling down drunk. I don't like to do it and I don't like to see it. Perhaps the same thing was done back in my day, but by the time I turned 18 I had given up drinking (no worries, I rediscovered it in my mid-30s).

But today is Pumpkin's day. Last night she went out with friends and at midnight was able to buy herself a drink. It seems many people bought her drinks. This morning she and her boyfriend, BigB, came over for a birthday breakfast. Pumpkin was a little worse for the wear but BigB was not looking good at all. I made them raspberry pancakes and scrambled eggs. Unfortunately b--who is the breakfast guru--had to work, so the cooking was left up to me. Everything tasted lovely but the eggs did not sit well with BigB.

After breakfast they ran out (in the pouring rain) for Pumpkin's spa appointment. A spa day was BigB's birthday present to Pumpkin--because he's an excellent boyfriend--so she will spend the afternoon being pampered and fussed over. We'll be meeting up with them later tonight. Our plan is to take them to an upscale bar or two and show them the other way to drink--the kind that doesn't involve flavored shots or ping pong balls.

Tomorrow they leave for 3 weeks in Europe. This is Pumpkin's graduation present to herself. Neither have even been to Europe and they've never traveled together on an extended vacation. I believe they'll learn a lot--about themselves and their relationship.

Pumpkin came into my life when I really needed her. I needed a surrogate adult child that actually enjoyed being around me and wanted to hear what I had to say. I needed a child who could allow herself to be affectionate and express her feelings. She needed a mother-figure who was willing to put her first; who could see how special she is and love her unconditionally. We stumble over how to introduce each other; how to explain our relationship to others. I think the closest explanation is that we have emotionally adopted each other.

I'm proud of her--her maturity and her accomplishments--and I am awed by her spirit and her passion. Whatever we are to each other I hope it continues for the rest of my life.


Amanda@Lady Scientist said...

Yay! Happy Birthday to Pumpkin! I think it's lovely that you found each other. From what I've read it sounds like you've helped each other out. I hope that you all enjoyed your evening out and that Pumpkin is happy seeing the other way to drink. :-)

Julie said...

Happy Birthday, Pumpkin! She sounds like a very special person. Your description of your relationship with her made me misty. It is beautiful. I would love to meet a Pumpkin in my life.

I agree with you about the law. We send people to die in wars, but they'd better not have a drink in a bar if they return. It's such a stupid law. I also agree that it makes people want to get falling down drunk on that big day. I wish our society treated young people as adults.

Thanks for another great post, Brigindo. I always think about what you say long after I turn off the computer. Have fun tonight! And best wishes to Pumpkins as she heads off on her adventures:)

drax said...


Someone hand me the tissues, please.