It’s my birthday today..
But don’t ask a woman her age – and if you do, expect a lie in return. With that said, I am twenty-five. Alright, alright, I know that isn’t that far of a stretch from my true age but if the next
twenty-seven (oops!) years go by as fast as the last then I’d better get used to saying that.
After having my own child I realized that birthdays are just as much about the person whose birth you are celebrating as they are about the parents of that person – or at least they should be. So, today I want to take the time out to say thank you to my parents. Not only for giving me life but for all the wonderful things they have done for me through-out the years. And believe me; my life has been wrapped in a whole lot of wonderful because of them.
Mom and Dad,
Thank you so much for all you have done for me. I wish I had the memory to remember it all. The space to list it all. The time to write it all. But, alas, I do not. So the following list of random things that have surfaced in my mind will have to suffice.
Thank you for..
Giving me life. Feeding me. Clothing me. Loving me and comforting me. For my “Snoopy Blanket” (I still remember picking it out at “Railroad Salvage” when I was three.) Thank you Mom, for reading to me every single night, endlessly and without discrimination to my book of choice, even if we had just finished it. (I still read like that from time to time.) Thank you Dad, for always making me feel protected – like holding my hand when we crossed a busy street when I was a little girl and again when I was nineteen, at which time you grasped my hand to keep my close while we walked through a particularly terrifying street in Puerto Rico. Thank you guys for summer vacations “as a family unit” in Wells Beach, ME. And October weekends in Vermont. Some of my favorite childhood memories come from those two places. For yearly day trips to Yankee Stadium and “Riverside” (I still call it that instead of Six Flags – I guess I really am old.) Thank you for never forcing shy little me to go anywhere, or do anything, that I didn’t want to do. Thank you for never hiring some creepy teenage girl to be my babysitter and for never making me sleep anywhere other than my house.
Thank you Dad for all those “under-doggies” on the swings at Brookside Park, Saturday mornings at McDonald’s, afternoons at Burger King and Jester’s Courtyard, mini-golfing and bowling, batting cages and go-karts. For Dairy Queen’s cherry dipped ice cream cones and our “secret passage” to get there.Thank you for all those Guida’s Hot Dogs we would get after school from St. Laurent to St. Joseph to Maloney.. And all those Bob Dylan concerts you have taken me too.
Thank you Mom for waiting on the playground with me every morning at St. Laurent and for picking me up when I was hysterical at camp because I missed you, or from Aunt Debi’s in the middle of the night because I was scared.
Thank you for paying off that thousand dollar AOL phone bill I racked up in high school that Dad still doesn’t know about (scratch that.) And for dealing with my teenage years when I was ungrateful and naive – just know that if I could go back and change those silent mornings in the car I would..
Thank you for moving us into a beautiful home in a nice neighborhood. And for working ridiculously hard to get us there. Thank you for teaching me about kindness and respect and love – for myself and for others. For giving me morals. And, for instilling in me a great respect of all of the earth’s creatures – I still won’t even kill a spider! Thank you for never pushing me to be someone other than who I am. Thank you for telling me of your mistakes while still giving me enough room to make my own. Thank you for watching silently as I made them. And thank you for speaking up when they went too far.
Thank you for all the sacrifices you have made, both large and small, but mostly they are large. Thank you for all you have done for me and all that you will do for me. Thank you for embracing who I am – yesterday, today and tomorrow. Thank you for celebrating me. Thank you for your unending support and unwavering confidence. But, most of all, thank you for loving me.
(I wanted to post this blog today in honor of my parents – life is short. It can end at any moment. We should tell people we love them when we have the chance. That said, with a heavy heart, I will continue to be silent for the next few days in honor of those who lost their lives in CT on Friday, December 14th, at Sandyhook Elementary. As a CT resident for my whole life, as a mother, as a daughter, as a sister, and as a human I feel it is only right for me to observe a few days of silence on behalf of the tragic loss of life. Please do understand.)