Birthdays are supposed to be a time of celebration, a time of marking the occasion that you're another year older and another year wiser, where more often than not there will be a party, presents and alcohol involved (yes the alcohol bit still counts if it's a child's Birthday Party, go hard or go home as the wise man once said). Your Birthday is supposed to be a day of self-involved relaxation where it's all about you and only you. That is, of course, unless you're planning on having a 21st Birthday Party in which case forget about all the nice things previously mentioned as there will only be stress, stress and more stress. Did I mention stress?
The Godforsaken Guestlist
The first and most stressful part about having a 21st is the dreaded fear that nobody will show up to your party. You don't want to wake up the morning after your party dying of a hangover getting war-like flashbacks of an empty dance floor lined with old people sitting in the corners commenting on what a small turnout it is. After much thought, you talk yourself around thinking "yeah of course people are going to come my party, why wouldn't they? I'm a delight" followed by "Oh Jesus no one's going to come, I knew should have been nicer to people. I wonder if I start being nice now do I still have time to win people around so that they'll come?" It's pretty much a continuous cycle of self-doubt. You even find yourself going through your friends list on Facebook using a well thought out process of elimination of who'll show up, who might show up and who's not even getting invited (all eyes looking at you Martin from Primary school who never gave back my multi-coloured pen).
Having To Attend Other People's 21st
If you're turning 21, then the chances are that the majority of your old friends from school are too. So if they're having a party, you automatically feel obliged to turn up to it. If you don't go to theirs, they probably won't come to yours; it's a harsh world when it comes to 21st Birthday etiquette. So you end up going to all of the parties happening in a ten mile radius, which ends up leaving a steep hole in your pocket. However when you're there, you can't help but take note of the crowd they have, the amount of decorations they have up, you even find yourself judging the cocktail sausages they're serving on the night "Yep, definitely from the Tesco bargain section." NEXT.
Having To Invite Unwelcome Guests
Another thing to worry about at your 21st, is making a holy show of yourself in front of the neighbours. Any sniff of a party at all and your mother will be there breathing down your neck to invite all the old people from the province. "Now I went to school with Bridgie's Mother back in the day so you're going to have to invite the whole family including her Granny, Grandfather, 1st, 2nd and 3rd cousins and that imaginary friend she had in primary school, you can't invite one without inviting the other." Does this LOOK like a wedding to you?
The 21 Kisses Conundrum
The biggest part of each 21st is the 21 kisses and the speech; this can be the making or breaking of your party. What if you don't get 21 Kisses? What If you only get 19? Then you'll have to move to Mexico, change your name, start up a new family and live with the fact that at your 21st, you couldn't even make the 21 kisses mark. As for the speech, if it's not heartfelt and funny then you'll be the talk of the parish for months, that is if you're even sober enough by that stage to string two words together let alone give a whole speech.
Apart from all this though, you should have a great night at your 21st.....