I glance sidelong, your eyes look straight ahead at the unending road. I glance back, the girls are lost in their own worlds. I sigh and settle back against the plush seat back.
Years have passed us by, adding wrinkles and crows feet. Grey hair and double chins. I remember the excitement of celebrating birthdays in the years past. In my words “your very own day!”. One day that is meant to celebrate the unique person that is you.
I look back at the diminishing excitement. Gifts getting replaced by cards and cards by blog posts and now a letter. I tell myself it does not matter. It is the thought that counts. Something in me demurs.
I give into the impulse and make a dash in between the work day, look a gift or two, find nothing that screams K, throw in a card and a cake. Set it up while you work in the basement oblivious to the torment in my head and sit back. Waiting.
As I wait to hear the shuffle of your feet as you shut down the computer and prepare to go to bed, I can almost hear the water bottle cap turn making that annoying squeaky sound. I know precisely how you will wait to close that metal gate shut.. softly and place that bottle on the countertop and turn around throwing a sweeping cursory glance at the rest of the living room as if to say goodnight and in a burst of energy bound up the stairs to call it a day.
It scares me that I can predict every little movement you will make. I also realize that this is what it means to live with a person day in and day out. To relate to them at a level that is past the verbal exchange.Where a look says more than a novel can. Where a frown can set the tempo for the rest of the day. Where a smile can set my heart singing. Where a well eaten meal can signify peace in the world.
It is the security of the little things that mean much. The predictability, the familiarity, the comfort that comes from knowing what goes on in that head of yours. It is all these little things that I value about my life with you.
For every year you have been in my life and for the countless years yet to come, I wish you a very Happy Birthday. A day filled with the little things that make you smile. A phone call from your dad and your brother, Kay and Cee’s hugs and kisses and the adorable I lub luus. A work day that hums with productivity, an evening that means a hearty dinner and a relaxed night complete with feet up on the recliner while the TV plays on mute and you snore away. Yes dear K, this is all I wish you for your birthday.
Happy Birthday love!