Dearest Elizabeth,

Happy birthday!

Thank you for inviting me to celebrate your birthday.
Unfortunately business here prevents me from joining with you physically, however please know I am celebrating in spirit here.  Late nights, slow mornings, socialising with friends, a quiet blanket and book and guilt-free afternoons binge watching TV series; I am incredibly joyful.

Your generosity in granting a day to celebrate you is appreciated, however I must confess I don’t always remember your birthday. The pick-me-up of a long weekend on the horizon is exactly what I need to interrupt the humdrum of working life, however with four under our belts this year, the significance of each begins to wane. Particularly so with this one – your birthday. See Lizzie, we’ve celebrated Australia Day, Easter, ANZAC Day – all significant days in our history. But then you come up, I can never remember if it’s Labor Day or your birthday, only it’s the beginning of the ski season – although there’s never any snow, also the beginning of the epic mid-season sales and finally brings back memories of travelling around the state for Netball NSW State Championships. Your birthday is being exploited, and I’m certainly guilty.

But see Lizzie, no one remembers you.

When it was my birthday earlier this year I organised a small party. Before sending out invitations of the Facebook variety, I had conducted pre-checks with the important people to ensure I wouldn’t sit in a bar alone. Having one’s birthday forgotten is devastating, and this is exactly what we, Australians, are doing to you. We’ve moved it to a more convenient time for us, acknowledging the anniversary of your birth is actually 21 April, because June just works a little better for us, you know?

Even more so, I’m celebrating other birthdays this weekend – a total of six people: Teagan, Bek, James, Roslyn, Kimjeng and Lisa. I’m celebrating with them because I value their friendship. I’m not celebrating with them out of obligation. In primary school I was invited to the birthday party of that weird boy, well me and every other kid in the class. See with no specificity in who you invite to celebrate with you, the whole affair becomes a little impersonal.

And so Lizzie, I’m sorry.
I’m sorry I overlook your birthday in selfish pursuit of a day away from the office.
I’m sorry I neglect you from my thinking, forgetting the monarchial leader from a far away land symbolically overlooking our affairs and not being thankful.

But in reality, we’ve had enough.  We are young and we truly want to be free.

Yours sincerely in sovereignty – our sovereignty,

Melanie

 

ps. I for one think June is a great time of year for Independence Day. #justsaying

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