My Birthday


Yesterday was my birthday and I didn’t have to make my own cake. By now I have had more birthdays with Mike than with anyone else in the world, so I decided it was time we had a heart to heart, because Mike gets stressed out by party planning. I told him I would like to go to The Cheesecake Factory for lunch and I would like to pick out my cake ahead of time and have it waiting. Why not? Everyone else picks out their cake. It just feels weird to have to say that. He should be able to read my mind, before I even know what I want, and plan it all, and surprise me, but that never works out quite right. Mike was delighted to get these requests. We looked at all the cheesecake options online and ordered a Key Lime cheesecake. I think he was worried I would go for chocolate, but I can be considerate of others even on my own birthday.


Since it was Sunday, we went to church first, of course. I was surprised that one of my friends brought me a little gift. This is one of my favorite tea buddies, who LOVES tea even more than I do, which is really something. She gave me two gold tea spoons decorated with roses. I should have taken a picture later, because it is hard to describe how pretty they are. Her card even had a tea cup with a real tea bag inside it. I took this to mean she would like to get together for some tea real soon, which is just what I want to do. 


By the time church was winding down, I was about to faint with hunger. Thankfully we made it to the restaurant before that happened. I revived myself with a glass of iced tea and then everyone wanted me to open my gifts. David bought me a tin of tea from Starbucks with his own money. Grace only had four cents to her name after paying her library fine, so she said something about having to give me a coupon. I asked, “Is this a coupon for something you do, or something you make?” She replied that it depended on what kind of yarn I picked out, but the coupon never materialized, so I might have to wait until next year. 


Mike was really clever. He picked out three books from my Amazon wish list. Can’t go wrong that way! He said there was a book for each one of my hobbies- one on companion gardening, one on herbal medicine, and one on keeping kids healthy. Now, he forgot a few hobbies, but that is OK. I don’t think I would want a book on laundry, and I already have plenty of cookbooks. Grace wants to read all my new books as soon as she finishes her stack of library books. She is so lucky to have so much leisure time. I read about 15-20 minutes before I go to sleep each night, so it will take me at least a year to get to the bottom of my stack. (He also announced last night that he got two magazine subscriptions I had on my list -Southern Lady and Tea Time! Wow! I’ll never lack reading material now!)


Grace was prepared to entertain us all with a mini game of Uno. Then lunch arrived. I just had an appetizer salad to make sure I had plenty of room left for the cake. 


I noticed a whispered conversation between Mike and the waitress and asked him, “You said ‘No’, right?” He mumbled something noncommittal just before the entire wait staff brought the cake and led us in song. They had even lighted a candle for me. I had to think about my wish, since I already have everything I ever wanted. 

The cheesecake was refreshing and tangy. Just what you want on a sweltering noontime birthday in August. It was enough to make us rub our tummies contentedly and think about a nap. So we went home and did that. I woke up and thought I might take David out to buy a few new pairs of shoes, since his feet had suddenly burst out of his old size eleven sneakers and dress shoes. As soon as I announced my intentions, Ms. Betty called and said she wanted to come over. Ms. Betty never comes over, so I couldn’t say no. She and her daughter and a great-granddaughter drove from her driveway to mine and greeted me with cards, a balloon, and a beautiful plant. They came in for a few minutes to chat about the things that keep us busy. Then I really did take David out to buy shoes, but our search was unsuccessful. Still, it was a lovely day. I didn’t mention an unexpected call from a very dear friend, and a card from Mike’s parents with a little cash enclosed, and a handful of handmade cards with loving thoughts printed inside. I ended up feeling loved and special and vowing to be a better, sweeter person, so that someday I would really deserve all this, and then we can do this all over again. 

© Being Fruitful, 2012