Unhappy Birthday

Today is supposed to be a happy day.  Today you are supposed to be 65.  You are supposed to be celebrating with your children and their children or at least looking forward to a visit from them.  You are supposed to be there when Amy or Noah get sick and I am in a panic because I don’t know how to fix them.  You are supposed to be here to push me when I feel like I’m stuck.   You are supposed to be here to infuriate me and make me laugh and tell me I’m wrong even when I’m not and to let me know you love me one minute and then turn around and insult me the next.

I still pretend that you are at the office or on a trip.  That I am going to get an email or a phonecall and you’ll act like nothing ever happened and I’ll be so mad but so relieved all at the same time.   Less than a month ago it was my birthday.  You were supposed to be the first person to call me and wish me happy birthday.  You always were, no matter what time zone I was in.  I woke up and I waited. And then I got in the shower and cried.  Everyone said that it would get better with time.  That it gets easier.  That you were happier.  Their lies didn’t make me feel better nearly five years ago and they all still remain untrue today.

To be honest, I think it might actually be worse.  Watching these two children grow up is both amazing and painful.  You would love them.  Even Amy and her stinkin’ tantrums.  She is a true Gemini, just like you.  She is the happiest princess in the world one moment and the unhappiest monster in the world the next.  She is so strong and yet so fragile.  So funny and yet so straight.  And Noah.  Oh Noah.  He is polite, sweet, silly, funny, shy and smart.  He’s a thinker before he becomes a doer.  But when he does, he does it right.  He loves fully and really only dislikes mushrooms and shrimp.  He’s scared of the silliest things and hides behind his little sister a lot.    He sings and cannot dance worth a damn, but he loves to.   Whenever I look at them, I see you or I see the faces you’d make watching them do whatever it is they are doing.  I hate that you have missed ever single day of their lives.  It is so unfair; for you, for me and mostly for them.

If I could make a wish today, for you, I would wish that you could spend a day … even an hour … with all four of your grandchildren that have never had the chance to spend time with a grandfather that would have loved them more than anything in this world (other than smoking and coffee and a Big Mac).

I miss you every minute of every day and though I’ve managed to keep the tears in more than I used to, days like today knock me back to square one.  I so wish I was able to call you today and wish you a Happy Birthday.  I so wish I could just hear your voice.

I miss you.

And I love you more than you ever knew.

2 Responses to “Unhappy Birthday”
  1. Robin says:

    Oh Kirsten… what a lovely, lovely tribute. I have tears streaming down my face right now after reading this and people here in Starbucks are looking at me like I’m crazy and I’m expecting a white “wagon” at any moment to pull up and load me.
    Having lost my cousin who I was very close to (I moved back to Canada last yr. as she was ill) and then her Mom, my Aunt, my “2’nd Mom, very suddenly this past January, at times I’m so very angry, almost hateful and terribly, terribly sad. I cannot imagine how much you miss your Dad, especially sharing Noah and Amy with him! He would have loved them! My heart aches for you that you can’t share the joy of your children with your Dad. I’m not gonna tell you either, that it get’s easier, cuz you know what, it doesn’t… people lie about that shit. It doesn’t get easier. I go to work 6 days out of 7 at the store that my cousin, Patsy, bought, shortly before she took ill, and where her Mom, my Aunt, took over before I was able to get here. Now she’s gone too. I cry almost every day when I unlock the doors and then I look up at their pictures and try and shake it off as I know they are looking down on my and shaking their heads as my mascara is halfway down my cheeks. But., as I still sit here writing to you, with tears streaming down my face… I gotta suck it up buttercup. Although we’ve never met in person, I just want to tell you what a good friend you’ve been to me, how many laughs you’ve given me, how much I enjoy looking at pictures of your beautiful children, and your life in the U.K. I hope everything goes a bit smoother for you in the next couple of months and I can’t wait to say cheers to you and to Lee over a lovely glass of wine in the not too distant future! Take some comfort in knowing how much your Dad loved you… he loved Lee, and he would have absoulutely adored Noah and Amy. Sometimes this shit isn’t fair, is it? Just know that even though your Dad is gone, so much of him is still here and he’s with you, all the time. xoxo

  2. Cathy says:

    Kirsty – I always think of you, Jamie and Scott on this day…you are right, your dad would have loved his grandkids and I too can picture some the faces he would have made (he had a certain smirk that I always picture when I think of him) watching them…
    Life can be a real test sometimes but even though you cannot see him so much of who he was is in you, in Noah and Amy, in Jamie and Scott and in Calleigh and Christian. I see it all the time in pictures, in stories you tell me about something Noah or Amy has done. I hear him in things that you say. I love you and I am always here for you…always…xo

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