Today is my birthday—I turned 68. Hard to believe! Will you help me celebrate?
Here’s a poem I wrote about the day I was born:
“She Was Born Dancing!” On June 26, 1953, my folks left their thirteen-month-old son with Millie, the family babysitter, to go to a square dance in Trinidad, fifty miles away. Mom danced one tip that night— She was nine months pregnant with me. They left the dance early feeling something was about to happen. Early the next morning Mom had labor pains that made her stagger across the floor. It was time! The fifty-mile trip back to Trinidad and the hospital was made in record time. At 10:30 a.m. I was born. Dad went downtown and ran into a fellow dancer from the previous night. Dad announced his good news— a new baby girl! Remembering Mom at the dance the night before, the only comment the stunned friend had to make was, “She was born dancing!”
Whenever my mom was alive, she made my birthday a special occasion. When I was a child, it was a party with all my friends and family and a birthday cake she decorated. Just inviting my cousins and family made a sizeable get-together.
As an adult, she continued to celebrate me on my day, making every year memorable. In 1983, when I turned thirty years old, Aunt Willie decorated a cake with one foot on a banana peel. My nephew carried in a watermelon for a gift (my favorite summer food). Then they gave me a gift of survival tools for being over the hill: my grandmother’s dentures, underwear and other key helping aides.
In 2012, Lin and I were at the National Square Dance Convention for my birthday, so Mom left me a voicemail wishing me a happy birthday. I kept that voicemail and recorded it on my iPad. After she died in 2013, I’ve started each of my birthdays off with playing it just to hear her voice and her greeting.
In 2017, my brother and his two daughters were in Branson, Colorado, for my birthday. They have their grandmother’s birthday spirit, so they provided the props, and we took these photos to celebrate.
Today I celebrate being 68 years old. My husband, Lin, made it a special day. He wrapped his gift a couple days ago and set it on the coffee table in the living room, enticing me to wonder about it.
This morning a beautiful bouquet of roses and lilies greeted me when I came downstairs. Then he sang “Happy birthday” to me and encouraged me to open my gift immediately. He bought me a CD player to listen to during my Quiet Time. Mine died a couple months ago, and I was going to replace it, but. . .
For breakfast, he fixed blueberry pancakes, and we played a couple games of Cribbage and I won—a gift he hadn’t planned.
Then after lunch, he put a “Birthday Girl” headdress on me and came in with lit candles on a carrot cake. He explained the lettering on the cake. He had bought a cake decorating tube and wrote my name in the middle but ran out of room, so the last A was underneath it. Then he successfully wrote “Happy” at the bottom, but he told me the tube malfunctioned so he couldn’t do “Birthday.” What a sweetheart!
Other family members helped me celebrate. This morning I received a text from my sister wishing me a happy birthday. This afternoon, I received a phone call from my niece and two of her children, my nephew and his two daughters, and my brother wishing me a happy birthday.
Yes, today we celebrated in true Horner fashion. Lin, who celebrates so much like Mom, channeled her celebratory nature the whole day.
Don’t stop celebrating birthdays, no matter how old you are—that special day when you were born! Do something outrageously fun and make it a day to remember! Lin and Mom always have!
What do you do to celebrate birthdays in your family or with your friends? (Scroll down below to make a comment.)
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