I didn’t wake up this morning feeling another year older or with an idea of what to do with my day…but damn happy to be here, feeling happy, healthy, and whole.
Having a summer birthday, I grew up with aspirations that some day all the students in my class would magically congregate for a special party in my living room. My birthdays were low key, most small and sweet parties with my family. Usually outdoors. The only birthday present that I really remember was from my fourth year – a pair of red rubber boots and a handmade carrot-topped Raggedy Ann doll that I named “Jody”.
Last night as my daughter and I were having our last words before bedtime, she asked me what I wanted for my birthday. “Green balloons. A puppy. And a kitty.” I was being silly but she turned my comment sideways after she said “I’ll get you green balloons. And a puppy. And I’ll let [our two cats] Oscar and Bianca in for you to play with.” Really? Is there anything I want more than a sincere wish made with love. No, not really.
My daughter turns four tomorrow. Before she fell asleep, I told her the story of her birth and the wonderful memories of those first hours with her. “What else?” She always wants more details of that magical day when she left my womb and was placed in our arms. I tell her that she made my birthday that year the most interesting one yet.
I wonder if she’ll remember this birthday. Will she grow up missing her school friends at her parties? Will she realize that we never really had the money in these years to lavish her with expensive gifts? We will eat good food. Find that banana birthday cake that she has been requesting for the past two and a half months. And we will sit outdoors. Sing. Laugh. And try to create a small meaningful moment for her to hang on to over the years.