Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Today feels like the end of summer, even though that doesn't really happen until September 21.
Last night Gary was talking about the U.S. Tennis Open, and I suddenly teared up because I remembered that when I was sixteen or so, during a very brief interest in tennis, my father got us tickets to the Open as my birthday present.
He always called me on my birthday (9/7), but last year, he didn't, so I called him instead. I could tell that he didn't remember that it was my birthday, so I reminded him, gently. He was horrified that he'd forgotten. A few days later, I got a card that said, in his shaky writing, "I love you even when I don't remember how old you are." I still have it around here somewhere, the lsat birthday card I'll ever get from my father.
Okay. Now I'm getting maudlin.
But still, it seems to me that the first birthday without a parent is a very strange occasion, since our parents are the people who make our birthdays possible. It's going to be a bittersweet day. I know he'd be happy I'm having another birthday, and would want me to have many, many more of them -- as I hope I do, too! -- but I still wish he could share it with me. (And I'm crying as I write this . . . told you I was maudlin!)
On a happier note, today's mail brought my birthday gift from my sister: a generous gift certificate to my favorite local yarn store, Deluxe Yarn Etc., an independent shop run by a retired nurse. A few days ago, Liz asked me for a list of the yarn stores here, and I didn't think anything of it. Evidently she e-mailed DYE and explained that she lived across the country and wanted to get her sister a gift certificate. She didn't mention my name, and her name's hyphenated with her husband's, but the owner, Florrie Kersey, must have recognized the "Palwick" part. She e-mailed right back and said, "I know your sister well! Call me!"
When I told Gary this story, he laughed and said, "Are you kidding? You're part of her Platinum Club!"
I said, "Oh, no. Lots of people spend much more money there than I do, believe me!"
My mother's sending a check, because she can't get out to shop anymore. I'll do my best to pick out something she'd want me to have, probably a piece of jewelry (not that I don't already have more than enough!).
I'm sure it will be a lovely birthday, especially since it's a teaching holiday. But I miss my Dad.