“So did you send player a lot of cute snapchats?!?” Mr. Photography dude asks when I got back from Miami.
“I would have if I didn’t spend half the trip in tears!” I say.
“Oh no. I told you to relax and focus on yourself!” he says.
Well. It wasn’t easy.
Fri. Dec. 18-Sat. Dec. 19
My family and I arrived to the airport late. My dad had already flew in from California where he was working this week. So it was just me, my Grandma, and my mom. My mom missed her flight and had to buy another one. My Grandma and I almost missed ours too, but a lovely Spirit agent rushed us through security and somehow got us on the plane minutes after it was supposed to leave!
So my 22nd was already off to a rough but blessed start. Once Grandma and I landed, we waited for my mom with dad. My mom landed a few hours later. We were all tired so we began to drive to the hotel. And then, she and my dad started bickering.
I look at Grandma. Why oh why did they come along.
“Hey you two, it’s almost Shahz’s birthday you know…” she says.
They stay silent. I squeeze her hand. This was supposed to be our trip. But they are my parents, and they did go through a lot to make this weekend happen, so I try to make the best out of it.
We arrive at the beautiful Conrad hotel in Miami and I am instantly greeted with a birthday card and English macaroons from the staff! The Bayview room was amazing too ❤ Unfortunately, my mom finds something to argue about and I am left in tears. The clock strikes midnight and suddenly it is 12:13- the exact time I was born 22 years ago.
I get a text from someone. It is my Dad (although he is sitting on the balcony right in front of me), “Happy birthday Shahz. May you get everything you wish for-you are a gift to us all”. I cry even harder.
“Gimme your phone! What did dad say?” my mom demands.
He smiles. I go over and hug him. “This is the nicest thing anyone has said to me all day” I say.
He hugs me and kisses me on my forehead, “Happy birthday Shahz”.
My mom is still clueless and decides to go to bed. My dad joins her and Grandma goes to sleep as well. I unfortunately, have a final due in 12 hours :0 Why oh why did I take a winter class? I stay up all night to finish it, by 5am, I am done. I pass out immediately hoping for a better day the next day. Little did I know- it would be almost identical to the day before.
When I wake up the next morning at 8, it doesn’t even feel like a birthday. My grandma wishes me, my mom wishes me, and my dad wishes me. But my dad starts telling me to get ready to do all our activities for the day. Uh hello. I went to sleep at 5 and only got three hours of sleep :0 Dad says we did not come to Miami to sleep and we gotta get going. Oh boy.
I put on my beautiful maxi dress I have been saving for the special day. As I’m doing my hair and makeup- I get a snapchat, it is “Heart”. “Happy birthday” it says. Lovely. Shortest birthday wish he has ever given me. But he’s the only one who personally wished me so early in the morning so I am somewhat happy.
I come out of the bathroom and my family and I start taking lots of pictures. We go to eat breakfast, I find a computer in the business office of the hotel to submit my final paper (I had written it all on my iPad :0) and then we are on our way.
We go to the mall to pick up tickets for all our activities. It is rather hot and crowded. The type of environment my dad and I hate :0 He and my mom start bickering again. In public. They are loud. I look at my Grandma. She was sitting like a stone.
“Oh my god just stop! Dad let’s go for a walk!” I say.
I pull him away and start crying. “Shahz. This whole trip is so unorganized and I am exhausted from my long business trip in California!”he says.
“Dad, I’m exhausted too! Everyday this break I have been sleeping at 5 in the morning because of homework! You’re the one that made me get out of bed this morning so early because you wanted to spend time with me!” I cry.
“Well I can’t now. I’m tired. I’m gonna go back to the hotel and you go celebrate with your Grandma and Mom.”
I wipe my eyes and give him the hotel key. “Fine.”
I walk back to my Grandma and my Mom by myself.
“Where’s dad?” they ask.
I take a deep breath. “He’s gone.”
They look at each other. I think about what Mr. Photography dude said the day before about keeping it together and being positive.
“Yea so? That doesn’t have to stop our fun. Yallah (let’s go)!” I say.
They smile and we spend the day touring parts of Miami and shopping.
My grandma sits next to me on the tour bus, “Don’t worry about your parents Shahz. They aren’t the people who we think they are. They love each other and you very much”.
Along the way, lots of mishaps happens. For one, the tour bus that was supposed to take us to the zoo got stuck in traffic because an accident and by the time we got there- it was closed 😦 Also it was rather cold and extremely windy making the ride more frustrating rather than fun! Finally when the bus got us back to our pick-up location, we were all starving and each restaurant I walked into had a 40 minute wait time 😦 Finally, we walked into one and it didn’t have a wait time but the food was very bad and I felt like throwing up. At this moment I get a snapchat from “Prince Player”. I want to open it, but I can’t. It is 8:00 and I am oh so done with the day, that didn’t feel like a birthday. And my eyes are closing from tiredness. We get on the train to go back home, and…of course we got on the wrong train and it took us an hour to get home.
When we finally get back to the hotel, there is a wedding reception going on with around 100 people. You have got to be kidding me. They use up the one elevator that is working and we wait for what seems like an eternity to get up to our room. When we finally get there, my dad looks very happy- but I am done.
I fall onto the bed and shut my eyes.
(to be continued)