Hands down my favorite dessert of childhood. Every year for my half-birthday, my mom would make me one. She’s adorable like that. She would sing ‘Happy Half-Birthday’ and gift me a little trinket.
Now, I do the same for my daughter. If you ask her, “When is your birthday?”, she will respond with a sharp, “August 14th and Love Day.” Love Day, aka Valentines Day, is her half-birthday and does not take a back-seat to the real deal. I make her half a cake. We throw a party. We give gifts to her friends. We love it.
My half-birthday is May 15th.
May 15th. 39 1/2, the last half year of my 30’s.
May 15th, exactly one year since my husband died.
I don’t eat pineapple-upside down cakes anymore. I can’t imagine a May 15th that might again warrant one.
I celebrated his birthday last year. I got a tattoo. His tattoo actually, in his hand-writing, on my arm in the same place he had his. I imagine my life will be full of celebratory July 28th’s. I am honored to celebrate the birthday of the man who made me a mother, the man who made me laugh the hardest, who pissed me off the worst, but who GOT me more than anyone ever had. This day deserves a celebration. But May 15th… I just don’t feel prepared to celebrate that day. I can’t imagine I ever will. It’s no longer my day. I don’t want it. It’s now the day my daughters father died. It’s a day for spilling vodka on the Earth, making borscht, and burning sausages. Most of our days lately are beautiful, filled with magic… but tomorrow… tomorrow is a sad day. I won’t pretend it isn’t significant or that it is something that it’s not. It’s a day I will welcome whatever emotions show up to have voice. It’s a day I’m going to spend outside barefoot, under flowering trees with my daughter and several of our closest friends, and tell stories of the craziest, silliest human I ever met.