Today is my 54th birthday and while I have never been ashamed of my age it’s still new to my lips and tongue. It also means I have to change the Hibernationnow home page because there it says I’m 53. I had no expectations for today, even though I dearly love birthdays. This year, however, with so much on my mind, with so many questions left unanswered, so much uncertainty: unemployment, health issues, etc. I woke up not with excitement but with a small, soft smile. I slept until 9:20 am, went downstairs for a giant birthday bear hug from my husband and an extra-strong cup of coffee.
I got morning birthday calls from my mother and my sister which is a family tradition but I still thought of the annual red rose that my father used to give me every year on my birthday when he was alive. For once, I did not need a “sign” or a “message” from him because even though he died 8 years ago, I knew that I was still in his heart and he in mine. Maybe being a year older brought me some much needed wisdom.
I went out to lunch with my friend Sarah at our favorite diner and we laughed and shared stories and commiserated about colleges for our seniors. Before we left she handed me my gift, a gift that I would have picked out for myself (and almost did). A beautiful silver star fish on a chain that made me gasp with happiness and surprise. It was a piece of the beach and the ocean that I dearly love, now wrapped around my neck.
I took my dog, Callie, for a birthday walk, just my sweet canine girl and me. We walked under the gorgeous sunshine, the red and yellow leaves blazing on the trees. The air was warm and smelled like pumpkins and I relished the 75 degree weather birthday treat. When my kids and husband came home there were hugs and kisses, gifts and happy voices, mine being the happiest of all. I opened presents from my son, my daughter and my husband and cards and well wishes from so many friends. I felt truly blessed; I am truly blessed.
The day ended with a surprise delivery of flowers from an old, lost friend, and dinner consisting of filet mignon, a chopped salad and pumpkin spice cake with ginger mousse for dessert. Even though I am 54 I was happy and excited that the waitress brought it over singing “Happy Birthday” with a candle to blow out and a wish to keep in my heart.