Yesterday was my birthday, which made it pretty easy to celebrate Tequila Day. I wish I wasn’t afraid to try a shot of tequila, but I am… I just know it’s going to burn like crazy and make me sick, so I just put it in my no-way-in-hell- bucket and had a Strawberry Margarita. I enjoyed every drop.
My birthday was a very happy one. Cole gave me the day off and pretty much ran camp, and I had a lovely dinner at Sabatinos, one of our favorite Chicago restaurants. My Facebook page raneth over with warm and amusing birthday wishes, and I received some great presents . . . . you know how I love presents!
It was my birthday, and I can muse if I want to . Would you like to have a piece of left-over birthday cake and join me?
Joe always tried so hard to plan a wonderful birthday celebration for me, but his plans usually went awry. We once ended up at a restaurant for the early bird special. It was a buffet and the average age of the diners was 80. Even the bread was old. They did have a very nice accordion player, who played happy birthday for me, and everyone sang — and I do mean everyone. There was also the birthday cake he bought me and forgot about. When he found it in his car a few months later, it did not have much happy left. Finally, after many such events, I took the pressure off and suggested we go to a family movie to celebrate my birthday, and it became a yearly tradition. The last movie we saw together as a family on my birthday was in 2008: Step Brothers with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly. Step Brothers was such a bad movie choice that Joe and I giggled about it late into the night. I remember Joe telling me, “Don’t worry babe, we will get it right next year for sure.” He didn’t.
On the eve of my birthday this year, I had a very short dream. I was boarding a bus and the bus driver looked at me and said, “Where to, lady?” When I looked confused, the driver said impatiently, “Lady, I need to know where you are going, don’t got all day!”
I woke up wondering what was next for me as I turned one year older.
This year might include being open to a little more change. Cole said to me the other day, “It’s so hard to let life go on without Dad,” and I realized how hard we had been struggling to live the same life we had lived when Joe was alive. Acceptance sucks. While I don’t have any plans to shake our lives up, I might open the door a little wider to new opportunities and possibilities.
I’m often amused by the question, “Will you marry again?” Do people really think men are lined up down the block? Heck, I’m lucky if I can pay a man to stick around. Dating? Some of the longest nights of my life were spent on dates — and that includes with Joe. Our first date was Pulp Fiction followed by Vietnamese food. I would never fall for the old line: “I will hang your backdoor in the morning.” I am smarter than the average widow. I am staying open to a life filled with friendship. A relationship will probably have to charm its way in through the back door.
For the last couple of years, I have been on hold. My eye doctor, dentist appointments, and doctor appointments have been mostly ignored. I realized the other day — when I turned a juice glass upside down to use it as a magnifying glass to read some fine print —that it might be time to make a few appointments. This year, I might consider signing up for a Pilates or yoga class, take my vitamins regularly, and put sleep on my to-do list.
One of the things I enjoy most is musing on Odd. I love being dubbed the “El Morno Queen,” and I hope to expand my writing even more over the next year. My Odd Family readers have been such a rich source of writing encouragement. Sometimes I have the desire to yell, “They read me . . . they really read me!!” But then I get a little shy. Shall I share a secret with you . . . I have almost finished writing a story. Sharing this story is a big part of what I hope will be next for me this year.
Birthdays are a great reminder to make every year count. My birthday wish is to make the most of my new year. I have never believed it was bad luck to share a wish with friends; friends help keep your wish blowing in the right direction.
Do you ever wake up and wonder, “What’s next?” Muse with me. Odd Loves Company!