Today is my birthday. I spent a beautiful spa day with my mom, who really did all the work, so it seemed appropriate.
This is a big year, the big Five-Oh. My grandmother would have thought 50 sounded so young. And yet she never told her birthday to anyone. (When she had to tell a doctor, she also threatened that she would then have to kill him.)
Last year, when we visited her graveside to mark the passage of one year without her, my cousin Greg shared how, at the end of the day on his last birthday, he felt like something was off. Something was missing. He realized he had not gotten “the call,” the phone call from our grandmother that could fill airwaves and miles with a force of grandmotherly love that could never be contained nor measured nor replicated.
A few years ago, I saved one of her birthday messages on my phone. I played it to myself last year, and again today:
“I wanna wish you a really, really, really, really happy, happy, happy, happy birthday.”
Oh, grandma, did I ever have a happy birthday. Let me tell you about it. It was filled with blessings — handwritten sweet notes and flowers from those delicious boys, a love-filled card from Maria, notes from friends near and far, and a special photo montage made by Christopher, whose kindness and love are as bountiful as anyone could want.
I must have been really, really, really, really good in my last life.
With gratitude abounding.