When she turned Sweet 16 she passed her driving test. After her victory, I went off to work and she went home since school had ended a week prior. She called me on the phone from home later that day, in tears and sobbing, as all of her friends were either on vacation or not at home to share her birthday and driving victory. No one answered her calls. That's tough for a sixteen year-old. I felt very sad for her but I kept a positive and encouraging attitude, like Moms do. Early evening, I watched her dry her eyes then drive away for swim practice without me in the car. That’s when I cried. I wanted to run down the driveway and shout to her, “Bean! Be careful and call me when you get there! Happy Birthday...”, one last time. Her friend Kourtney made her feel better later that night.
During all of those years and through college, teammates on her swim teams celebrated with her. She would give everyone at least one week notice that her birthday was approaching (right, Allison?). We all laughed about it!
Gina, around four years old with Chicklet teeth.
Today she’s 25! I know this is a worn out question, but, “Where does the time go?”
Gina always loved special, self indulgent gifts but this year is different. She and Billy are moving into their new house and they will complete their move next weekend. When asked what she would like for her birthday, she replied, “A Lowe’s Home Store gift card!” Not the usual “Coach” handbag (please?), new shoes, or expensive perfume. So, a gift card is what she received, plus Mom on her hands and knees painting woodwork and Dad taking Billy to Lowe’s for window blinds while she unpacked boxes. It was a good Birthday.
Ok, she's not a child anymore, but I would still prefer to buy her a new pair of earrings, coloring books, cool shoes, and roller skates.
Happy Birthday, Bean
You are loved.