Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Birthday Card

My first birthday without mom came all too quickly. January 28th was only a few weeks after Mom had died. It was a strange feeling. Yes, still a sad one, but different than the previous days. It got me in my soul, in an even deeper, more personal place than before.
Mom was the birthday party giver. She was the birthday celebrater. How could I even think about my day of birth when we had just recently experienced her day of death? She was the one who birthed me and brought me into this world. But she was no longer here. My birthday would not be the same without her. I did not even want my birthday to come. In fact, I dreaded it. What would we do? How could we pretend not to notice she wasn't there? Yes, we all got together. Yes, we went to dinner and tried to celebrate. But the whole thing was just awkward, that is the word that comes to my mind, awkward.

Then, there was The Card........the card my dear sweet friend got my Mom to sign for me just a couple weeks before her death, knowing my birthday would be coming soon. She had told me of it, and had my sister hand deliver it to me on my actual day of birth. But I did not open it. I couldn't. It lay there on the kitchen counter, for days, for weeks, before I had enough strength, enough guts to open it. I knew it was one of the last things she ever wrote, and definately the last thing she would ever write to me. It was all I could do to see my name on the front of the envelope in her shaky handwriting. But one cool day in Febuary, I had the opportunity to be alone, and I held the card in my hands for the first time, touching the letters of my name with my fingers. I finally opened it, and I could hardly read her words through my tear filled eyes. I loved it, knowing it was her final words to me, but hated it, feeling how unfair it was that I would never get another birthday card from her again. It was too much to bear, but yet I wanted more. I did not want to ever have to read it again, yet I could not put it down. I continued to read it over and over again. It was so bittersweet. I would cherish it forever and ever.
She wrote how much she loved me. She told me what a good mother I was, and how proud she was of me. She wrote about what a delight it was to be a grandmother. And she ended it saying she would see me again soon someday in Heaven at our beautiful reunion with our Savour. Some days I feel that day will not come soon enough. Oh glorious day that will be!!!!!
Tears ran down my cheeks till I could see no more.

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