Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Birthday Reflections

  By the time one has become a geezer, you have experienced a plethora of birthdays.   Today marks my 77th so I have pause to reflect on birthdays past and birthday traditions  I've experienced.   The family of my youth made very little note of birthdays.  In fact I can't remember any particular celebrations of my birthdays throughout my toddler, preteen or teen years.   As a child of the  World War II era, there were few resources for celebrations with gifts and special foods.   Perhaps my memory is failing but I think I may have had a cake on my birthday.  However, candles would have been in short supply.
   My father was not a very demonstrative man.   He seemed to be embarrassed to overtly show affection.   The one memorable gift of my childhood birthdays was given on my 11th birthday of April 11, 1946.  With the war over consumer goods began to appear.   On the afternoon of my 11th birthday my father arrived home, stepped out his car and tossed a rectangular box to me.   What a surprise!  Inside was a brand new high quality softball.   This is still a most delightful memory 66 years later.
A Special Gift on my 11th Birthday

   During my adult life I have been blessed with many joyous birthday celebrations.   Both my 70th and 75th birthdays were milestone events with my dear wife Nancy assuring that they would be special occasions with friends and family.   Although today is my official birth date, this past Sunday  much of the family gathered for our Easter dinner that had a birthday cake especially for me.   This weekend will include another celebration with our youngest daughter.   My dearth of early year birthday celebrations certainly has been amply compensated for in my adult years.
   Probably birthdays are such special things because they celebrate the beginning of existence as well a markers along the way of ones earthly life span.  After initial birth the continuing birthdays can be the mechanism to celebrate being a part of the great universal cosmos.
A Happy 75th Birthday

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