I am terrified of my birthday. Not so much because I am growing older, though this is becoming more the case now than it ever has been, but because I am certain that everyone will forget that today is a day to celebrate my life. To combat this, I am usually fully prepared to purchase my own gifts, plan my own parties, make the big deal of myself that I am sure no one else will. Except for the fact that Aaron will--if I give him the opportunity.
Today I am surprisingly okay with the fact that Aaron is sick in bed with the flu, that Sasha screams whenever I hold him, and that I am scrubbing the floors because the house is beach dirty after yesterday's dog excursions. Janet has reminded me that next year Sasha may run into my room and wish me a Happy Birthday. This is enough to make my day.
But Aaron does not believe that I am fine with cleaning on my birthday. He's heard enough of my birthday woes to look beneath the surface. Standing in front of him is not the happy mother of a newborn son, but an eleven year old girl who rode to the bakery to buy her own birthday cake only to be hit by a van on her way home. Cake squashed, bike ruined, her grandmother chastised her for being so greedy and demanding as to want a cake just weeks after the year anniversary of her mother's death. It served her right. Standing before him is not his wife, who knows she is well-loved by him, but the child who had to remind her grandmother every year of her birthday and hear in turn that it might have been better for everyone if she'd never been born.
Aaron cannot disappoint me. Rising fevers, torrential rain, we will make it into the city for a nice dinner, an evening stroll and then we will return early so that I might partake of the many luscious bath products that Aaron has selected for me. When I open the bath bubbles, oils and salts, I don't even want dinner. I just want dessert and a bath but I allow my feverish husband to tour me around so that I know that I am a big deal.
And that I am mother loved. By him. Always.