Today is John’s birthday.
It’s the fourth one I’ve been able to share with him and while he doesn’t like to make too much of his own birthdays, he goes out of his way to make mine special. Right about now you may be thinking, “If it’s John’s birthday, why are we looking at a picture of you blowing out candles?”
Let me tell you a story …
Remember when I wrote here about being in Scotland for my birthday? Well, we were there because John had big a reunion nearby with former colleagues from the television station where he’d worked before retiring. A few months before the event, he noticed the date was on my birthday and he kindly asked if I would mind going that evening.
Once he was sure I was fine with sharing the day, he began planning how he might make it memorable for me too. He knows I love a trip to Scotland so it was big part the fun we had on my birthday and our evening finished with a small carrot cake in our hotel that night after the reunion. The cake part presented a little problem though.
I’m a big believer in candle blowing and wish making on birthdays. There’s something hopeful, thankful, and celebratory about the act that feels necessary to me and I can’t imagine a birthday without it.
John is not that bothered by it on his own birthday but he knows how important it is to me. We took the cake with us on our outing thinking we might have it during our day out in Scotland, but stayed in motion so much that we decided to save it for after the reunion. When we rushed in to shower and change for the evening, we realized that we didn’t have a way to light the candles for the cake.
He went out to buy some matches or a lighter and was gone so long I was beginning to worry. I didn’t know that since we were in a hotel in the center of Carlisle and it was evening that the shops would be closed.
Poor John searched everywhere for an open shop to get what we needed and finally ended up a good distance away in a pub that he was familiar with from his days of living there. They didn’t sell matches, but the guy behind the bar gave him a box they had for the pub’s use.
After hearing about his search, I asked him how far he’d had to go before finding them and was really touched when he said, ” About a mile. “
Life with him is like that. A million little sweet gifts of service that say love. I am a fortunate woman to have found this gentle man and I am so happy to be able to celebrate another birthday with him today.
Here’s a photo to save the spot for now. I think of this look as his determined face. I’ve seen it before although it does look a bit different with the beard and all.
I imagine this was the expression he was wearing all around Carlisle a few weeks ago and it makes me smile just thinking about it.