Another birthday survived

I did it. I made it through another birthday. For once, I didn’t cry. It’s all Mom’s fault. She did this Queen for a Day thing where I woke up with my bed covered with gifts, went to school wearing something new, got to eat whatever I wanted and always had a family gathering with cake and more presents. She set a precedent. Now I want every birthday to be like that. As an adult, I got in the habit of taking off for the day to the coast, the woods, or a historical site. But I always knew we’d be celebrating in the evening. Except for the year my dear husband misunderstood and didn’t get me a cake because he thought I was on a diet. Diets do not include your birthday. Never.

Now, however, I live up here in Oregon’s coastal forest with my dog Annie. The dog does not do birthdays. She wants to play keep-away with the stick, go for walks, sleep on my lap, eat lots of “cookies” and chase invisible invaders in the dark.

I have had some lonely birthdays up here, and I thought this might be the loneliest. But no. I dragged my slightly older body to yoga class, where I proved to myself that I’m in darned good shape for my age. At the end of class, a friend asked what I was doing for my birthday. “Not much,” I said. “Well, how about if we go out for dinner?” she asked. So we did. She brought her husband, and another yoga couple met us at the Noodle House on Newport’s Bayfront. Great food, great conversation, a great ocean view, and they even gave me presents. No cake. But we did have these interesting cinnamon noodle rolls with a candle in the middle of the plate.

When you do yoga together, you create a bond. How can you not be friends when you stick your rear end up in the air in downward-facing dog, fall down trying to balance on one foot, and twist your arms and legs in ways they never intended to go?

Thank you, Lin, Jackson, Fran and Bill. It was great.

P.S. Don’t let me drink champagne next time.


Author: Sue Fagalde Lick

writer/musician California native, Oregon resident Author of Freelancing for Newspapers, Shoes Full of Sand, Azorean Dreams, Stories Grandma Never Told, Childless by Marriage, and Up Beaver Creek. Most recently, I have published two poetry chapbooks, Gravel Road Ahead and The Widow at the Piano: Confessions of a Distracted Catholic. I have published hundreds of articles, plus essays, fiction and poetry. I'm also pretty good at singing and playing guitar and piano.

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