Yesterday was my birthday. There were so many highlights… here are some…
• Riding on the back of a tandem bike to work… drinking a delivered latte.
• Birthday pie.
• A phone call from Italy that included three renditions of adorable little-girl Happy Birthday singing… in Italian, Spanish, and Chinese… ah-mazing.
• Great news at work… that I will tell you about soon.
• Drinking dark and stormys made from home-brewed ginger beer…
Even though he brewed ginger beer for me in the years before, I really didn’t expect it this time.
• Dinner with Missoula loves at the best pizza place ever.
• Hall and Oates.
• Temporary tattoos. [“how trampy do you want your stamp?”]
…and so much more.
But what really takes the birthday pie [get it? instead of cake.], was all the mail I received.
For over a week before yesterday, I started getting letters marked, “DO NOT OPEN UNTIL MAY 16.” I grew insanely curious.
I would get a letter in the mail, see the front and go, “YESSS!” and then I would turn it over and see that I couldn’t open it yet and go, “DAMMIT!”
I honestly had no idea what was going on… nor did I know who was behind it all… all of this…
So, when I got home from work yesterday, Evan said I could open the letters. It was an overwhelming experience. Each one was a puzzle piece.
And the first one I opened, Emma’s, I was kind of blown away… did not expect it… she was telling me about why she was so happy I was alive… in her life…
It was a lot to take in… wow.
And then they just kept going.
25 people wrote [or shared a photo, a poem, a drawing] and told me why that were glad that I was born. It was incredible. There were many times that I had to stop, breathe, got choked up… started crying… had to stop, settle down.
Evan made a little stop-motion video of me opening them… I was about six or seven letters in when he started…
[that video does not do the experience justice… at all… but it is precious for me to watch it and relive it.]
I didn’t know who did this all, organized it… I had my guesses. And I opened them in an order where I would find out quickly who did all this… or so I thought. I got down to four letters: my mom’s, my dad’s, Evan’s, and Lisa’s… and I still had no idea who was responsible.
I opened Lisa’s, sent from Italy, and it said, “OK, so by now you are on to my plot.”
I just cried. Had to take a second. I didn’t expect her. We’ve been friends for 25 years now. She could say to me, “Hey, I forgot your birthday, sorry.” and I would say, “That’s okay. I love you.”… but she didn’t. She contacted TWENTY-FOUR of my friends… most of which she does not know… also, FROM ITALY… and made this happen. Made me feel like a princess on my birthday. Amazing.
Multiple drinks into my celebration last night, I kept saying, “Lisa is like Oprah… No, she’s better than Oprah… ‘YOU GET A CARD! AND YOU GET A CARD!'”
It was the most beautiful birthday gift I have ever received. Hands down. When I finished reading it all, I put the pieces together and this is how it read…
Right? Tears. Of joy. So special. So sweet.
And I wanted to try to repay you all with a little bit of something special… so I did an OH-MY-GOODNESS THANK YOU radio show. A song dedication for each of you.
Click on the photo to download. Or right here. The radio show is a better story of all of the cards… I try to do them justice, but it’s so hard… they are all so wonderful.
I love you all.
I’m exhausted from your love… which is the best kind of exhaustion.