Turn down for Flerp

By Mir
April 18, 2015

I don’t know if you knew this, but today is a very special holiday. Just in case we all suddenly fell and hit our heads and forgot, my darling daughter made sure to note it on the family calendar pretty much the moment we flipped over to April.


That’s right—Flerp Derp hopes you are all observing International Flerp Day today. (Translation: It’s her birthday. Please to remit candy immediately.)

So, I hope you’re sitting down, because the scrappy little girl who was newly six years old when this blog started just turned 17. SEVENTEEN. I’m not really sure how that happened, quite frankly, because the periods of time between when she was either actively or passively trying to remove herself from this mortal coil OR I was strongly considering removing her myself often seem very small and rare, indeed.

This young lady beginning her 18th rotation around the sun is a testament to second (and third and fourth and fifth and etc.) chances and grace beyond human understanding. I mean, I know she doesn’t see it that way, but I do. Every day. Every time she smiles. Every time her brows knit together while she’s thinking hard. Every time she tells me she’s feeling “PRETTY FLERPY, MOM!”

First thing this morning (well, okay, more like at 10:00 this morning when Monkey asked for the fourth time if we could wake her up NOW?) we piled into her room and serenaded her with a spectacularly off-key rendition of “Happy Birthday” while the dogs walked all over her and wondered why everyone was being so loud.

Then we came downstairs and sat through the careful, non-ripping paper removal on the pile of gifts. This year she refused to offer even a clue as to anything she might be wanting, shrugging her shoulders at every inquiry and saying, “There isn’t really anything I need.” So we guessed, and went with a small sea of items designed to make her smile, and most of them did, although the clear winner was The Greatest Shoes Ever:


(What’s that? You don’t have any rainbow wiener dog Converse? I’m sorry. Not everyone can be this flerpy and fabulous, y’know.)

There was much merriment and later there will be decadent chocolate torte with salted caramel glaze and hopefully in the final balance, it will be a good day.

Listen up, little girl, because here’s the 17 things you need to know at 17 (for when you sneak over to read this):
1) Yeah, I called you a little girl. You’re always going to be MY little girl. Sorry, not sorry.
2) At the same time, you’re nearly an adult, and one I’m proud to know, at that.
3) DON’T PANIC. It’s not like you hit 18 and that’s it, you’re done. There’s always time to grow some more, I promise.
4) It’s okay that you’re still figuring stuff out.
5) It’s okay to make mistakes. (Good, even.)
6) You will never regret being kind, even if it gets thrown in your face later.
7) When someone turns on you, chances are excellent it has everything to do with their personal demons and almost nothing to do with you. Think about your part in it, but don’t take it all on when it’s not really yours.
8) Any time you do your best, we’re proud of you, and you should be proud of you, too.
9) Any time you don’t do your best, you end up really mad. And you think you’re mad at everyone else, but… well, I think you spend a lot of time mad at yourself.
10) Spend a little more time being kind to yourself and you will be amazed at what shifts in your life, kiddo.
11) Honesty is both easier and scarier than the alternative.
12) There is no truth that can diminish you.
13) Avoidance is a time-limited strategy that requires a tremendous amount of effort to maintain.
14) We can’t control everything. We make the best choices we can at the time, and then later on we make different choices if we need to. That’s called life.
15) When you relax into yourself and let people in, there is no one more fascinating, entertaining, and loving. You have no idea how awesome you are.
16) Someday you’ll look back and be amazed.
17) You are enough. Full stop. YOU ARE ENOUGH.

The past 17 years have been both interminably long and impossibly short. As I said last year: never easy, always worth it. I never knew such a complicated person could exist or that I could love her so much. Lucky, lucky me.

Happy Flerp Day to you, Chickadee! May your flerpiness continue to know no bounds. You are my very favorite Flerp.


  1. Chuck

    Hope you all have an awesome Flerp day!

  2. Little Bird

    Happy Birthday Chickie! 17 is an awesome year!
    They all are, really, but I remember really enjoying 17.

  3. Stephanie

    Wow! 17! Happy birthday! And, rainbow weenie dog Converse shoes? NEED.

  4. Wendy

    Happy Happy Happy Flerp Day.

  5. Brigitte

    Now I’m hearing “Flerpy Flerp Flerp” to the tune of Ren & Stimpy’s “Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy” song.

  6. Sheila

    She is my favorite Flerp, too.

    Also, I am sending a link post-haste to my own newly-minted seventeen year old, because as usual you have said things with far more eloquence than I ever could. In fact, I think this should be required reading for all 17-year-olds.

    Happy, happy birthday to Chickadee!

  7. Karen.

    Many happy reruns. :)

  8. Aska

    Happy birthday, Chickie! Have the flerpiest day ever!

  9. Kim

    Happy flerp day to Chickie! My 15-year-old daughter has those shoes too! Love ’em!

  10. StephLove

    Happy (belated) birthday to Chickadee!

  11. Stacy

    Happy birthday, Chickadee! Those shoes are fabulously flerpy.

  12. Sara

    Happy birthday, Chickadee! May you continue to grow in wisdom, love, and flerpiness!

  13. Mel

    Happy flerp day to Chickie!! I took a picture of your advice so my ancient 45 year old self could read it occasionally and be reminded, it’s Swasome!!! (As my recently turned 17 year old boy would say).

  14. Meri

    Happy birthday, Ms. Flerp Derp! I hope you had a wicked awesome day!

    I decided honesty was easier because you don’t have to keep track of who knows what. That’s too much effort for me.

  15. Billie

    Happy Flerpy Birthday Chickadee!! :)

  16. Jamie

    Happy Flerpday, Chickadee!! Hope that torte and caramel was super fantastic!!

    Mir, starting at number 4 of your list, these apply to all. At 43 and post-divorce, I have learned so much about myself and realize that we’re all a work in progress. It’s too bad we don’t realize that earlier on.

  17. Jeanie

    Happy birthday, Chickadee! You’ve come far. Love, love, love your shoes (being a dog person). I hope this year is your best one yet. See you for dessert.

  18. Elz

    Ah, happy belated birth- I mean-Flerp Day! Congrats, momma, that’s a lovely lost for your not so little girl.

  19. skubitwo

    Yes! There’s is always time to grow. Teaching at a community college shows me that every day.
    One of my MIL sayings was that as you grow, you look around the world and realize you aren’t really as dumb as you think you are. Not that you may suddenly feel genius, but that you actually learned a lot in your life.

  20. Mary

    After a busy few weeks, I’ve just sat down to catch up with Casa de Mir. Oh, sweet. lovely Mir, who knows shoes… I have tears running down my cheeks. Chickie is one lucky girl. You are my hero. Your love shines even in the darkest days and you are her champion. Sending love to you both.


  21. Chris

    Happy Happy Birthday!!! And love the shoes!

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