Thursday, April 25, 2013

Have a Cupcake

Actually Katie's birthday
So what does a birthday mean? As a kid, presents, parties, special dinners, cake, lots of cakes, unless you like pie. As I grew, sometimes drinks with friends, especially that twenty first birthday, when I also was near the end of nursing school and maidenhood.  Almost a month after twenty one, I graduated and got married on the same weekend. No wonder, I felt the need to drink.
After marriage, for me, the drinks slowed down. Special presents presented to me at expensive restaurants by my husband. A trip to Cape Cod one year in the cold, but bright sunny weather, staying in an old bed and breakfast in Barnstable, Massachusetts. Or driving to my friends' house in Foxboro, Massachusetts in dark rainy weather after work, because David was in the north Atlantic playing hide-in-seek with the Russians. Terrie made pasta served with John's homemade Italian wine. She also invited a friend from her work, who disdained me with sour glances. That was not a highlight of birthday dinners. Oh and Terrie and John's new baby seemed to cry incessantly. Twenty five, not so good.
Later, back home in Pennsylvania, my last birthday with my dad, I worked afternoon turn, then,so he made me stir fry for lunch. He had just found out his cholesterol was high, commencing the process of cutting down on meat consumption. Still he was dead by the next year from leukemia. I also had a huge belly, as one month later, I delivered my first little girl.
Lunches with friends continued celebrations. The girls grew, we had picnics, like at McConnell's Mill or dinners at Eat-N- Park for my free grilled sticky. Denny's for the free meal some years brought me there.
We celebrate our special days. Now, a quick note on Face book fillss me with pleasure. I think after my walk, I'll try the grilled sticky. The changing of the clock at midnight, (what does it mean?), and now technically, I really am fifty two at ten AM. Diane got the call into the office, while she was in eighth grade, reporting the best current event for April 25, 1961, according to her social studies teacher.
The actual day, though, how does that make a difference in my life. Yesterday, I was fifty one, today, I'm fifty two. Now that day I was born created a big difference for my mom and dad and siblings. But today, what really does it mean- besides getting a free grilled sticky?
My administrator in my new place of employment sent me a card, with birthday wishes and thanking me for being a hard worker, joining the team, with a gift card from McDonald's. That raised tears to swell my eyes last evening. The unexpected element of birthdays surprise us, pleasing some, me included.
My husband looks at his birthday as another day, preferring no one even mention it. In his perceived unselfishness, he makes it hard for people who love him and want to greet him with good wishes or gifts. He has mellowed greatly since I met him. He is gracious in celebrating my birthday, though.
Celebration of life enhances a person. Yes, we did nothing to be born. One resident talked about conception last evening. He marveled at watching the video of egg and sperm and growth in uterine. "What starts that heart to beat? I guess that is where religion comes in." We talked mostly about big bands and places he played. Found out he graduated with my mother in 1941, but Sharon had classes of over three hundred back then, so unless a student were in classes together or were neighbors, he couldn't possibly know everyone.
I believe in celebration. Thank you for all the celebration. Have a cupcake and think of me.

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