Sunday, September 30, 2007

Feeling Nostalgic...

I guess that birthdays do that. Yesterday was the 8th anniversary of my 29th birthday, or in other words, the 37th anniversary of the day that I was born. Weird. Sometimes I feel like I am not a day over 18 and other times I feel every single minute of every single year since I have been born.
Yesterday was a beautiful day - the sun was shining and the weather here has finally started to cool. (Hello? It IS Fall!) My daughters were wonderful - my oldest even made me some double chocolate muffins all by herself. My best friend sent me some wonderful chocolate covered strawberries and I was able to get some time to myself. Still, in spite of all this, the day was not quite all it could be. You see, the person that I most like to celebrate and share the joys of my life with, just couldn't be here yesterday.
I felt his absence yesterday as I do everyday - like a hole that I just can't fill. I wander around our home from room to room, and if I think about him very hard, I can almost see him here. Memories and dreams of him fill every room. But on special days, dreams and memories make sad companions.
Still, there is one memory - of another birthday 10 years ago. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was turning 27 and our love was fresh and new. We were still in that awkward stage with one another, where we were still unsure - not of our love - but of how to proceed. My mom lived 2 hours away that year and we decided to go and spend my birthday with her. I love to drive with him in the car. We talk about everything or nothing. He holds my hand. The smile he gives me that tells me he can't wait for us to get there already just makes my heart melt and my knees get weak.
My mom lived in Melbourne, FL. It was a wonderful trip. I love the beach and she lived close enough to walk. We spent a large portion of the weekend at the beach. He would draw dolphins and planets in the sand for me, and we would lay on our backs and try to count all the stars. I hated for the weekend to end, but it finally did. Back to work and the real world.
Still, we stopped at a hotel on our way home - for just one more night together before the real world came crashing back in. He hadn't given me my birthday present yet. That night, he shyly presented me with a little bag, sweetly wrapped. Inside was the most precious little owl that I had ever seen. (The owl is symbolic because it is our college's mascot, so I collect owls) It was sweet because this particular owl had been retired and I knew that it had cost him some money. I also knew how he had really tried all weekend and with the owl to make sure that my birthday was special, because he loved me.
There are many days that I celebrate with my children while my husband is gone, but most of the time, my heart just isn't in it. I know that I am lucky I will have the opportunity to celebrate when he does return, but sometimes I wish that our lives weren't always - celebrate when we can and not necessarily when we should. But that is life and it's our life. A birthday is an arbitrary date - the chance to celebrate it at any time with the one you love the most - that is what is important.
Today I think of that birthday long ago and all the happy memories since and I look forward to the time when I will celebrate again....


Sandy said...

Happy belated birthday! I can imagine the big days are harder without the other half-around. We once did Easter without Bruce home - it wasn't quite the same, but it did give a small taste of what it's like to be the temporary single-parent on a day that's traditionally a family day in the house.

I think some planning is in order - a time when he's home when you can re-visit the big days that were missed together. A time to recelebrate the celebratory moments as a single cohesive unit.

All the best.

Thecapitanios said...

What a sweet memory of the birthday 10 years ago. Hold on to that until he gets home my dear. Stay strong.