February 20th is a special day. It always is. But this year, people are celebrating around the world!
For what, you ask? For me, of course :). Just kidding. I mean, a select few are celebrating me as it is, in fact, my 33rd birthday. That IS reason enough to celebrate.
But as she tends to do every time my birthday falls on a Monday, America has decided to also split my birthday celebration with that of two great men: President George Washington and President Abraham Lincoln. Happy Birthday, Abe and George!
But let’s be frank here. Abe, your actual birthday was over a week ago and George, you have a few days to go yet, so I trump you. Maybe trump isn’t the right word since you actually ran our nation, but for today, let’s just pretend, okay? Now, enough of talking to dead guys.
Travel half way around the world to the country we call home: India. This year, I’m also sharing my birthday with an Indian national holiday called Maha Shivaratri. There are a few legends surrounding the holiday. One says Shivaratri is the wedding day of Hindu gods Lord Shiva and Parvati. Another says that you can pray to Lord Shiva and be freed from the reincarnation pattern. What I normally notice and hear about, though, involves husbands.
On Shivaratri, often my young, single friends are following strict fasts and prayer rituals, asking for the provision of great husbands (as apparently Lord Shiva is known for being the ideal husband.) In addition, my married friends are fasting and praying for their husband’s good life. Each year I’m asked at least once if I’m fasting for my husband.
Let me make this clear: tomorrow, I am not fasting for my husband as I have frozen half of the sugar-free, gluten free cream cheese pound cake I made last week to be my birthday cake. Whew, I’m glad that’s off my chest. I love you, babe! (And I’ll pray for your good life on a full stomach.)
So, now I’m off to celebrate myself (and our Presidents and my husband). May you all have a great Presidents’ Day/Shivaratri/my birthday! I’ll try to stop pretending everyone’s out of school simply for my personal celebration.