In all the shuffles of daily life with a newborn, I have to wonder how many other new parents’ own birthdays almost entirely overlooked. Especially when those days fall so close to other special days. Because today I’m twenty-nine, and what had made this day special until about dinner time was watching my kid interact with the fancy attachment on his bouncer, which had been too much for him until I hooked it up for him on a whim to see if at least it might distract him from the act of whimpering long enough for me not to feel guilty while I used the bathroom. Of course, watching his face when it lit up and moved around like it does made me postpone my visit to the toilet just a bit, too. Because he’s awesome. And fun to be around. But he doesn’t know what a birthday is, or why one might celebrate such a thing or at least try to make it special in some small way.
So I was in the middle of writing this rather melancholy post with water on the verge of boiling for pasta when the door magically swung open and in walked that husband of mine, who I didn’t expect to see until bedtime. He had grocery bags and a birthday card and bellowed, “Happy Birthday,” as he walked in. I’m not much for gifts these days, though that’s traditionally the manner in which one might celebrate another year of living. So I guess when there are no gifts, it’s more difficult to define the day as special. But when a husband was supposed to work a shift that takes up the whole day and surprises me this way, it’s definitely better than sitting here (mostly) on my own. And a lot of our time together is pretty darn special, all the more when he cooks me shrimp, and we eat at the table with the TV off.
I practically forgot my own birthday was upon us until two days ago, so it’s totally not the husband’s fault for having scheduled the all day shift to begin with. But still, I was feeling slightly gypped today until he walked back through the door. Turns out I’m a pretty lucky birthday girl, after all. Even luckier than I thought.