A few years ago, we spent my birthday in a hotel.
A hotel with an elevator.
The kids were fighting over who would get to push the buttons.
Over and over and over.
Each time we rode the elevator.
So on my birthday, I announced that for my birthday, the only gift I wanted was to be allowed to push the elevator button. All day long.
And it was granted. (Other parents reading this may understand the fullness of the joy of this gift.)
The next day, we got into the elevator. I reached for the button, clearly forgetting that my birthday was over.
Sam pushed my hand away and disdainfully said, "It's not your birthday anymore, mom. I get to push the button now."
Favorite birthday memory ever.
My birthday is on Saturday.*
I think most of my mama friends would tell you that our birthdays tend to be less of a big deal than our kids' birthdays. Okay, maybe that's just in my house. But that's just how it is. My birthday is always at the end of a long string of family birthdays…I don't mind. I am not one of those people who dreads getting older, and I like the general fun of having the whole world wish me a happy birthday.
But this year?
Oh my. I'm not ready. I'm not interested.
It's hard to believe that I'm going to be one year older.
And Sam never will.
I am going to be 37 years old. And then 38…and 39…and continue on (God willing).
And Sam will remain forever 8 years old.
How is that possible? How can it be?
I've been scared for my birthday. How will it feel to have people say "happy birthday" when I'm really quite far from happy? Is a birthday one of those things that if you skip it for one year you can skip it for good? Will I want to celebrate my birthday someday again? It's not that I don't want to get older…I am so very aware of the beauty and blessing of each minute, each day, each year of living…I just don't have it in me to celebrate….