18 was so long ago but feels like yesterday.
It’s Thanksgiving, and as each year passes, my heart has healed just that much more. It’s more than turkey day for me. This day had held another meaning. It was Patty, my first loves birthday. She used to say, I get the best birthday dinner. It was such a buildup for her. Her mother Rose, she did a great job each year to make sure Patty never felt cheated. At the end of the meal, she would pull out a pecan pie with candles. Patty’s favorite, then the festivities shifted to a birthday party.
Patty once told me. It’s always hard to get people to go to birthday parties, but everyone joins in on Thanksgiving. So, I get the best of both worlds.
Her outlook was so refreshing, even today as I think about it. It was her outlook that had me hooked, the reason I fell so madly in love with her. We would be preoccupied but that did not stop how we celebrated the time we were gifted with. I loved the way, went passing her in the hall, she would take me by the hand, and we would slow dance. There was no music, at least none that you could hear. But my heart sang a melody and her eyes played the tune.
When Patty died, Thanksgiving had lost its meaning. For so many years, I celebrated it without thinking. Thinking meant missing her. So, here we are today, thirty years since she passed away. I’m smiling as I cook, basking in the preparation of the food to be served. I will still wish her a happy birthday, but the pain is now gone. I will always miss her, but it’s time to allow myself to be happy on days such as this.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all, and happy birthday Patty.
This song befits the memory and the loss, but the future that still lies, unknown.