The sunlight hit my face, warming it while the chilly late winter breeze blew through my hair, and nipped my nose. My nose is cold, it is always cold, but I am bundled up with my scarf, my hat, and my late winter, spring wear. I am ready for spring. My favorite season, the season of renewal and of birth. This year, I will be renewed and reborn.
I have been working on a project of me. I have taken the focus off of everything else in my life, and focused on me. I am focusing on my health, my finances, my diet, and my career. I am in a good place in life. It is March 7. The fact hits me hard. So hard, it knocks the air right out of my lungs. Tears sting my shaded eyes.
Today is his birthday. Today, we would be celebrating 82 years. Today, we are not celebrating. I get in my car, turn down the radio and reflect. I call my grandmother. We chat and talk and even bring him up. We bring up his love of warm milk on sleepless nights. I share a story of him making me warm milk in the middle of the night a few times. Apparently, she never knew. It was like we still had little secrets that were just between us. I laughed saying, he was probably sleepy and wanted me to go to sleep, so he gave me milk so he could. She laughed too.
We end our conversation, not mentioning it is his birthday. I continue driving to my boyfriend’s house. I do not listen to the radio on the way. I drive in silence, surrounded by memories of birthdays past. Mine, his, Mom’s, Granny’s, Heather’s, everyone really. They have always been big days in our family. They are the day you were born. You came into this world, all new and shiny. You had yet to be tainted with the world and it’s harsh realities.
Birthdays are good days. Today’s birthday is always bittersweet to me. I smile and think of all of the happy times, and funny times, and good times. I wipe away a tear at lost memories that were never had. I wonder what he would think of me now. I am 31 years old. I live alone. I have a job that I find mediocre. I have a degree that I love, but never use. What would he say? What would his advice be? Would he be proud of me? Would he be disappointed in me?
I pull up to the curb, and start to unload my stuff. I know that inside there will be a happy home, filled with puppy love, and snuggles from my love. I know that we will relax and enjoy each other’s company. I know that we will discuss our lives and important details, like what is for dinner. We will discuss our parenting with the new puppy in our lives. We will be happy. We will be content, and both completely in love with our new little furball.
I glance around, squinting against the sun and see it. There is only one, but it is there. Earlier than normal, but never too early for me. A daffodil. There it is. Alone. On the edge of a neighbor’s yard. I smile, tearing up again. Many memories were lost, but he is still there to say hello, and remind me he is there for me, even now. Under my breathe I tell him I love him and I miss him so much. I take a moment to just stare at the flower, loving it; treasuring it. I walk inside with a small smile on my lips.