Yesterday was my mom’s birthday and we had a nice group of people over to celebrate with her. I got her Hamilton tickets for her birthday a few weeks ago so we didn’t do anything too crazy besides have some pizza and cake with everyone. She seemed to really enjoy herself which was good considering the conversation we had a while ago about the month of July.
My mom’s birthday is July 12th and my parent’s anniversary is July 30th. With both of these dates coming up I figured I should ask my mom how she was feeling and if there was anything that I needed to do for her on those days. Surprisingly she said her anniversary wouldn’t be the hard one for her but her birthday would be tough. Within seconds of explaining why I could see the tears welling in her eyes and I felt awful. She said she would just feel weird not having that special person there to celebrate with her. Sure, you’re surrounded by loved ones on your birthday but it really does make a difference when you have the person you’re in love with there. It’s hard to explain but I think everyone likes having their person around for their birthday.
So yesterday everyone came together for my mom to celebrate. The Murray’s, the neighbors, and Zack and I were all there to make her day special and I think it really was. We sat around in our front room shooting the shit and sharing stories. It was a really nice night.
While we were sitting there though I did have this strange realization. It mad me sad for a little while but now that I think back it was actually a really amazing moment. While I was sitting in the front room with everyone I realized everyone that was there for my mom’s birthday was there the night my dad died. It was a bizarre moment because naturally it brought me right back to that night and it was the first time in a long time I had really thought about it. For a brief moment it put me in an odd place but I knew I had to pull my shit together because yesterday wasn’t about me. So I pushed it to the back of my mind and didn’t think about it again until this morning.
One thing that people have told me throughout this journey is that people will constantly tell you that if you need anything at all to just let them know. I appreciate the sentiment don’t get me wrong, but the fact of the matter is that most of those people won’t really be around. I totally understand why… life, kids, work, school, whatever, it all gets in the way so I don’t get mad or blame people for not checking in like they said they would. The thought is nice but eventually, as time passes, you can really find yourself alone and it’s scary.
Last night showed me how truly loved we are. Last night I initially focused on the bad part of all those people being there when I should have realized how remarkable it was that after almost 4 months the same group of people came together to be with us. When I realized how amazing that was all the sadness from focusing on the night my dad died went away. I felt thankful that these people said they’d be there and haven’t left our sides yet.
Here’s my advice-never forget to be grateful for those around you. It might be a small group of people that stick with you but damn they can be powerful.
Happy Birthday mom!