Cover illustration: Ashley Trail
Every time the Earth turns, it gets one day closer to full rotation around the sun, also known as a year. While it takes the Earth 365 days to make this full rotation, each year the Earth needs approximately six more hours to get to the finish line. Every four years, these hours happen to create an extra day, February 29th; which just so happens to be my birthday.
While it may seem sort of sucky to have a birthday that only happens every four years, over time I’ve come to believe that being born on Leap Year is truly better than being born on any other day. Here’s why:
I always win Two Truths and a Lie. Being able to list being four years old as a “truth” always seems to trick annual birthday-ers.
Contrary to popular belief, I still celebrate my birthday every year. Meaning I have the run-of-the-mill birthday celebrations everyone usually gets on “off-years,” as well as a much larger celebration on the years when my birthday actually takes place. For my birthday in 2020, where I officially turned four, I was given a surprise party and a likely case of COVID-19.
I can choose my birthday on “off years”. On the years where my birthday doesn’t actually occur, I can choose to celebrate on the 28th (early presents), or on the 1st (Justin Bieber’s Birthday).
The culture surrounding my birthday is also very unique. I am proud to say there is a movie starring Amy Adams that centers specifically around Leap Year and the Celtic tradition that a woman is allowed to propose to her husband on my birthday. It got bad reviews!
Lastly, I love the fact that until a few years ago, the DMV didn’t recognize my birthday as a legitimate day. Good thing I got my license last year!
Having a birthday that only takes place every four years makes me different, but in a good way. While there is tragically no February 29th in 2021, the Leap Year babies will continue to relish in our superior birthdates and continue to celebrate.