Friday, August 23, 2013

Happy Birthday to me

Today is my birthday. I had forgotten until my sister posted something wishing me a happy day this morning. I thought, “Oh. Here it is again. My how the summer flew by.”

I remembered back to the days when I waited so eagerly for this day: Back to the days when my birthday meant a real whipped cream cake with candles and singing. A time when I wasn’t allowed to see the cake until the candles were lit.  A time when I believed the simple action of blowing out candles could make my wishes come true. I remember the magnitude of taking that one big breath – as a year’s wishes hung precariously in the balance of my success - or, God forbid, failure.

The days of cakes and candles are long gone. Still I can’t help thinking what wishes I might make if a candle was to come my way.

A slice of D’Amico’s Bakery birthday cake to see if is as good as I remember it.

The familiar conversation with a man I know well:

Jin! It’s thy father. I think it is someone’s birthday today.
Really? Who?
I think I am talking to her - the middle one. 
You know, I chose today for my birthday because I am very diplomatic. It was my first act of diplomacy.
Well, your mother’s birthday is tomorrow.
And Papa Paldino's was yesterday. So I purposely chose the today so I was between them. I didn't pick sides.
(That easy, low laugh) Well, that was smart! You are my diplomatic one. So Jin. Where are we going to celebrate? Pick somewhere good. My stomach will be waiting...

A special lunch with my mother.

An afternoon shopping with Carol filled with her quick banter and laugh.

All of us: Johnny, Irene, Eddy and Carol, recounting the stories of our childhood together and hearing the inevitable laughter. And then be the one who doesn’t have to clean the table.

Those are wishes beyond the magic of any candle. Still it nice to dream, to remember. I am confident of more good birthdays ahead. Today is one. I am happy for the warm wishes from friends and family. I am thankful for the sunny day. I am fortunate to have Sam and Tony and yes, Mr. Dog as part of my life. 

And for the candle wish? That’s simple. Happiness for those I love.

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