By Bernadette A Sahm
Every birthday is a blessing, a time to be thankful to be alive. Each year is a treasure as it unfolds. We all have a birthdate. Today is mine!
Some birthdays are better than others some so memorable that we never forget them. Thank God for my parents Bernie and Inez who gave me my life, without their union I would never have been born. Today they live in heaven, and I am certain they are proud of the daughter that I have become.
Last year I turned sixty and on my birthdate we purchased our new beach home in Rehoboth Beach. Five years before that we flew to Las Vegas and on my birthdate met friends in person that I only knew from my online support group for estranged parents of adult children. Who knew that our husbands would have so much in common and easily become friends too?
The year before that I replaced my old convertible car with a newer version. All memorable big birthdays. But I also remember the ones where I cried my heart out when my mother would choose to deny that I was her second born daughter. Or the years I would cry nonstop because just days after my “special day” is my estranged daughter’s birthday. These hurts and losses would make the big sweet ones all the more special.
What I know about birthdays is that God willing they will come around every year and that some will be better than others. I am blessed I am at peace and I am surrounded by love, what more could this birthday girl ever want and wish for?
Yesterday I was late for a meeting that I thought was cancelled, rushed off after receiving a message “are you coming?” only to show up without my mask and to a room filled of masked colleagues singing “Happy Birthday” I will remember this as the year I was mortified to have forgotten my mask and the thoughtfulness of those who caught me off guard by celebrating a day early!
This morning one of my dearest friends treated me to a birthday breakfast celebration where we chatted for hours, it felt so normal to participate in a face-to-face meeting and conversation in our COVID year. Such a gift her friendship is to me.
On the way home my husband texts me that a dear friend and mentor has died. My birthdate is now his death date. I settle in to do some work in my office and am interrupted my husband has taken his lunch break to bring me flowers and a card. Tonight we will celebrate with a really nice dinner at a favorite restaurant. In between all this I am trying to get some work done with a few projects that I have going on with work.
A few friends have donated to a charity in honor of my birthday, St. Jude Children Research Hospital. I am so thankful to them.
In my life and between my birthdays, I have lived and I have died a little each day. Some days were filled with love and life and some were filled with death and despair. But isn’t that the pure beauty of life?
Every single person that has remembered me has touched my heart and I am filled with gratitude. And guess what? This gal has so much more good living ahead of her …God willing.
Stay tuned … I love life and living it during the good days and the not so good ones, given the alternative, I will happily take all the birthdays and all those days in between.
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