The eve of my birthday is as special as my birthday because it is also the birthday of one of my best friends. I was lucky enough to meet M when I was a wee babe, a life-changing event that I don’t remember in the slightest. We went to day care together and I’d like to say that our friendship was evident even from the young age of two, but more than likely, we were sort of lumped together because our birthday’s were so close. “Let’s celebrate them together!” someone probably suggested. “We can’t have two days of cupcakes!” another said. “That’s too much sugar!”
Perhaps our mothers, early on, had the same thoughts as our beloved Central Church caregivers. “They can’t have two birthday parties- who would celebrate first? Would we have to have two weekends of parties?”
Or maybe we just hit it off. Maybe we were inseparable, destined from the beginning to be lifelong friends. Either way, I can’t remember very many of my childhood birthdays without M there. As we grew older and attended different high schools, and then went to college two hours apart, we still managed to keep in touch twice a year- once on our birthdays where I would call her and then she would call me the next day to say Happy Birthday, and once in the summer. One of us would randomly call the other and invite her to do something. We would hang out for a day and then talk again in January. Those years, we did not celebrate our birthdays together. But we were still friends.
On the eve of my 38th birthday, which seems very old and very young at the same time, I am thankful that M is still in my life. Tomorrow I will wake up early and call her when it is still her birthday in Georgia, but it is already my birthday in Bahrain, because it’s funny. I will tell her I love her and how grateful I am for her and we will get ready to experience our 38th year on this planet together- not physically close, but in each other’s hearts.
Tonight, I will also reflect on how blessed I am to be living the life I am living. I have an amazing husband, beautiful children, wonderful friends and family around the world. I miss being near them but I know they love me.
I will also miss my mom tonight, as I do most nights. But I will miss her especially as I remember our last conversation, which took place on my 32nd birthday. She had a collar made for Bay with my email address on it and was so excited to show it to me over Skype. I wasn’t as appreciative as I could’ve been but I did like it. Bay still wears it.
There’s no telling what this year will bring. Our new adventure in Serbia glistens on the horizon, but there are a lot of moments to be lived between now and then. I ask for guidance to live my best life. I pray for me and M that 38 will be the best of the years we’ve had, and the worst of those yet to come.
Happy Birthday, M!