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My, oh, my. It’s my birthday. Well, according to WordPress. I am just writing because I won’t have time tomorrow or later today because I have to write a paper on same sex marriage.

Today I am turning seventeen and I cannot believe that ten years ago I turned seventeen and actually remember it. On that year, when I lived in Peru, my mother bought me Annika, the protagonist of Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus and oh God I loved her. I had to open the package the day before because she was seemingly too perfect to my eyes. I still have that Barbie, with a torn dress, no crown, no wand, no shoes and tangled blond hair. Suddenly I have a feeling to want to play with her right now.

Last year I spent my birthday in the beach, which I wasn’t that eager about, because it’s sandy and plain boring. My mother’s birthday is on the day after mine so I agreed to go because the beach is her paradise. I’m grateful for what my mother did last year to make me have an enjoyable celebratory birthday. We ate Afghan food, bought some books (old paperbacks) and I can’t remember what else. I do remember not being able to sleep because I had seen a terrifying documentary some weeks before about Hell. I’m not at all religious but am still afraid of going to Hell. That’s why I was a Catholic as a child in the first place. Now my mother wants me to get my First Communion and go to church. I refuse because I do not like to be pushed into believing in something. I want to let it come to me, if it ever will. Nowadays I just believe there is someone on the sky, looming overhead. But that’s another matter.

Last year I had no apparent idea I was to be so fascinated with Pola Negri or silent films overall. I liked Pola surely but I hadn’t seen any of her films. Had I killed myself as I had imagined when I was fifteen, I would have never discovered Pola or the silent film pantheon. I will always discover various things in the future that I will come to love, and that is why it is important to keep going. I apologize if my tone sounded quite morbid just now.

Now I shall reflect on the things I did last year, because I never will be 🙂 again. Incredible films were seen, such as Ninotchka, Masque of the Red Death and Sumurun. I discovered the loveliness of Ernst Lubitsch and David Lynch. My huge obsession with Pola Negri began. I saw my favorite band live for the third time, but REALLY saw them live. Must I write again that they performed a song so rare in their concert history? It was my favorite song, yes. And I did scream quite loudly, of course. It was a concert I will never forget. They played songs especially from their first album, which is my favorite. I will never get over that. There are just some things a human can’t quite accept during his lifetime. I also became more open to myself and became aware of what I truly liked and disliked. I stopped pretending to be an avid heavy metal fan, for example. I no longer force myself to listen to awful bands just because I want to feel different. The feeling of being ordinary truly is horrific but wholly changing yourself because of that is just more disgraceful. I was OK with not liking every band that everyone liked because my own tastes matter more than popular opinion. So there we go. I found out that I REALLY enjoy listening to Type O Negative; which is contrary to the old superfluous belief I used to have that I would never fully like them because they weren’t “heavy” enough. I also did give myself a break on my writing and hopefully will stop being so hard on myself from now on.

There was a downside to go along with one of my many ages of golden discoveries. There is always a downside to growing up. I was depressed. I can’t blame myself for it. It’s genetic and not impossible to defeat. I cried and cried and cried and cried and cried. Wailed at times, too. I don’t know how many tears I have shed in the last three years. Hopefully there will not be so many in the bright future as there have not been at all now. I quit medication, spent some months of bliss and then found myself unable to escape emotional pandemonium. I went back to pills, strong bipolar pills with side effects that would just destroy me. I was increasingly moody when I took Lithium. How I shudder when I remember. But luckily I am hoping to feel better now that I have been prescribed Zoloft for the last two months. I found myself so terribly insecure and always afraid of never being good enough. I compared myself to other people and ended up in tears. But no more of that. I am my own being. That’s all that matters. This year I am looking forward on triumphing over my untamed depression. No more hopelessness. No more giving up on life just because the future seems bleak. By God, I am so young.

This year on my birthday I’m not going to be stupid and get tipsy with wine and loudly sing along to songs of my favorite band. Nor will I let myself cry, unless I am overcome with felicitous emotions. I’m actually asking my mother to rent the silent cinema I go to on weekends so I could force my family to watch Lubitsch silents all day on the big screen. My older sister and mother also tell me there is a surprise awaiting for me…but I do love surprises so I won’t think hard about it or else I will be tortured by thoughts and start asking for clues. Yes, I must admit I don’t have friends who would enjoy seeing such things but I am thankful my family can stand me and my interests. I would love to see Blue Velvet on the big screen but just the thought of sitting next to my mother while seeing Frank humping Isabella just doesn’t feel right. Maybe I should bring The Exterminating Angel since she speaks Spanish. Um, sure it’s a bit frightening and make one feel trapped, but Luis Buñuel is a great director and that film makes you think that your social status is insignificant because we are all of the same species and share the same needs.

Here’s to a new age: a year closer to Finland than ever. Closer to opportunity. Closer to life, for I haven’t even lived yet. And closer to stability.

I shall crank up some Zappa. Dance the foxtrot while watching The Oyster Princess. Sing along to Pola Negri’s songs. Recite “The Conqueror Worm”. Attempt to look pretty. Celebrate my existence and the years I have left. Look as awkward as Ashley Wilkes did when people sang to him “Happy Birthday”. Read Bukowski. Speak the little Finnish I still know. Lay on the couch, rest my head on the pillow and listen to Type O Negative. Smile and cry while my favorite band plays. Think of Tom of Finland and how he serves as one of my biggest inspirations. What a life. Oh god, I’m so real. Happy birthday to me.

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