The holidays are upon us in earnest and Christmas is coming this Sunday. I’m also having a birthday this week too. In fact, it’s tomorrow (Thursday).
Before you feel too bad for me and express sympathies that my birthday must get forgotten due to its proximity to Christmas, I will make you feel better by telling you that in all the time I’ve been alive, I’ve never felt bad about having a birthday three days before Christmas.
There’s one reason for that (well, two). Harold and Dorothy. My parents.
My parents came into my life sorta late in theirs. They tried for several years to have a kid the old fashioned way, but in the end, for whatever reason, they were unsucessful. So, like countless others who wanted a child, but just couldn’t make it happen, they turned to adoption.
That’s where I came into the picture. My parents adopted me, sealed the deal in late November, I was born on December 22 and they brought me home to live with them on Christmas day.
Since that time, my parents, being the intelligent and thoughtful people they are, went to great effort to distinguish my birthday from Christmas. It was always considered a seperate day and talk of Christmas was put aside until it was over.
Sure, the house usually already had Christmas lights and decorations up (my father was like that), but that was not allowed to detract from my birthday. If my party was at the house, we celebrated in a room away from the tree and as much of the rest of the Christmas-centric decor as we could manage.
They were also really great at making sure I had separate birthday and Christmas gifts each year. My mom still does that to this day.
I have no doubt that when I see her this weekend she will make me open my birthday presents first and then make me wait for the Christmas presents until a respectable amount of time has passed. Somewhat of a traditionalist is Dorothy. If my dad were still alive, I’m sure he’d insist on the same thing.
The purpose of this missive is to say that I’ve been very fortunate to have these two people in my life. Whatever happened, they always put me first and made sure I never needed or wanted for anything.
I could not have asked for better people to show me the whys and wherefores of life. I just hope, if I ever have children of my own, I can do half as good a job as they did.
It’s a tough act to follow.