Never had a birthday biscuit before today and my birthday’s not until tomorrow. But that only added to the surprise when our Breakfast Club gathered around Martha and Dick Stout’s table this morning to feast on food and friendship.
We talked of books, church, science ( my turn to listen), Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter, how we were raised and more. No litanies of aches and pains, pills and laments over what used to be. I was among the living and learning, so when asked what I wished for, I said, “This.” And by that I meant that I was still around to enjoy this beautiful first day of June with friends in a spectacular setting on the bend of the Ipswich river.
As I left, Martha handed me a gift and cards from Russ, Polly Ann, Ken and Alice. I’ll open them tomorrow. But for today it was gift enough on the eve of my 83rd birthday to enjoy the company of friends. And to talk of faith, doubts and puzzle over hard questions. Jud loved times like these. Me, too.
And speaking of Jud, yesterday would’ve been our 60th wedding anniversary, May 31,1963. Still there are some days when the hardest thing I have to do is get up and “faith” another day. But I take courage from Jud’s lack of desperation as he faced death. His trust in God and acceptance of whatever is beyond this life as we know it, still quiets me in anxious times.
So on this day, sandwiched between our anniversary and my birthday, I’m grateful for Jud’s life well-lived and mine still going on. I’m grateful for a candle-lit birthday biscuit and enough breath to extinguish the flame.
However, unlike Jud, I do get desperate now and then. But it’s usually over small stuff. Like last week when I bought a new deodorant. It reeks, like insect repellent. The good news is I’m bug free. Which is nothing to sniff at, since it’s almost greenhead horsefly season.
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