Today was my 50th birthday. It has been full of unexpected surprises and precious moments.
It began yesterday with a birthday package in the mail from my darlin friend Bev in Indiana. She sent me goodies like tea, lotion, and of course, chocolate!! She and I have been friends for 19 years and a little something like 2200 miles of separation could never change that. We are forever friends by now. As they say, we have to remain friends because we know so much about each other, we are dangerous.
Then, today, I was wakened by my husband inviting me out to breakfast. When we got back, he handed me a beautiful love letter that I know he suffered through to write. Writing does not come easy for him, so those two and a half pages were precious.
In the afternoon, Nicole surprised me by taking me to the Chinese Gardens in downtown Portland. It is such a gorgeous place with photo opps around each corner. We took lots and lots of pictures and laughed and just enjoyed time alone--a precious commodity these days.
We came home, after getting a delicious rosemary mocha, and my friend Susie and her son Jake and friend Randy brought over a lovely chicken casserole for lunch, plus decadent chocolate, coconut, nutty bars for dessert. As they were leaving, my special friend Susan and her hubby and daughter came by, bearing a gorgeous floral bouquet from their garden, a homemade cake, a matching Writing Goddess key chain and even a beautiful butterfly necklace for me.
Later, my sons gave me a gorgeous turquoise purse I had been admiring. Finally, Jon, Nicole's boyfriend, made the evening complete by ordering dinner for all of us. Tomorrow I have a package coming from a friend in Texas and several friends from all over the U.S. have sent me cards. My old college roommate even remembered and sent me a book!!!
Am I lucky or what? Truly, I am feeling deeply loved right now. Two voices were missing. I didn't hear from my oldest, but I don't hear from her on birthdays for reasons I guess I don't understand. And I desperately missed my mother's voice calling me to sing a purposely off key rendition of "Happy Birthday". She and I were 30 years apart and often kidded about turning 50 and 80 respectively. I am sad she isn't here to give me a hard time about it.
Nonetheless, I am feeling blessed in many ways, with caring kids, charming husband and loving friends. I mourn what is gone but cherish, more with every passing day, what is here with me. As I look back on 50 years on this planet, I realize that as good as life has been, today, this moment, is still the best. Happy Birthday to me!