I’ll be honest. In terms of actual birthdays, it hasn’t been the greatest ever—we drove all day yesterday and for half of today, and it’s always a big fat bummer to come home to the Christmas stuff, and all the mess of unpacking the car, getting ready to go back to work tomorrow, making sure we have food in the house, etc.
We are all super tired too.
But that’s just the way it had to be, you know? I’m not super anal about celebrating on the actual day. Robert and I had a great dinner with my siblings last Thursday, and will celebrate more this weekend. There are other little dinners and things planned with friends, and I suspect there will be some revelry still to come once Caroline and Robert get home from the grocery store and vague “errands.” But still—kind of a blah day. A day in transit and transition.
So I appreciated today’s offering from the Writer’s Almanac. Inspired by that poem, as well as my life (which is pretty darn awesome when I take a step back)… I give you “Birthday Thanks.”
To the newly knitted mittens,
made with a little of this and that
over late-night vacation conversations.
Praise the cold that received us
as we drove north, and to
the bushel of red navel oranges in the trunk
to make that cold more bearable.
Praise the homecoming, like walking into a museum of our life,
Praise the dot matrix paper, unfurled,
with H A P P Y B I R T H D A Y scrawled across it, praise the
barefoot six year old, now coloring between each letter.
Praise the cardboard box
which has become a ramp for the Matchbox cars.
Praise the tuning fork
which became the most beloved gift
for the eight year old who always whistles.
Praise the speakers in the kitchen
playing all the right music
while the boxes get flattened and the Monopoly put away.
Praise the counter, crammed with groceries:
bananas that will be perfectly yellow by morning,
and sliced bread in all its preparedness,
ready for tomorrow’s lunchbox assembly line
even if I am not.