I woke up this morning with a smile on my face and a spring in my step. Today was going to be a good day. I jumped out of bed with enthusiasm, said a prayer and hit the shower. Fully dressed, I walked towards the front door, knowing that the mail man would ring the bell in a matter of seconds.
‘Morning lass’, he said fondly.
‘Morning Mr Mail Man’, I replied. This had been our daily ritual since I was 9.
He handed over my mail saying that there was a specially special one and went on his way. Turned out to be a card made by his little granddaughter whom I had met a few times. I smiled, picked up my bag and headed for the car. Before I got in, I noticed a bright coloured envelope being pulled along the driveway by the wind. I assumed it was dropped by the mail man and ran after it. There was no address on the back so I opened it and read the first line:
My dear baby,
I call you my baby because…
Urgh! People weren’t original anymore. What happened to handwritten love letters. This typed one seemed so cold. I stuffed the letter in my bag. I’d figure out who to return the boring letter to, later.
At the office, there was cake and loads of presents. There was only one downer on the day. I kept checking my phone for that one call but it never came. By the time I was getting off work, I was both exhausted and sad. The drive home was longer than necessary. I had taken another route to avoid driving in front of the house I wanted to avoid. At 9pm, my phone finally rang.
‘Elsa, I’m surprised you haven’t called me’.
‘Called you?! Mom, today is my birthday and you forgot’.
‘Elsa, I …’
‘I don’t want to hear it mom’, I interrupted, with tears in my eyes. ‘I have to get off the phone now’, I added and went on to hang up.
In my anger, I got off the living sofa and my handbag fell to the floor, contents spilled. The bright coloured envelope caught my eye again and I decided to continue where I left off.
I call you my baby because no matter how old you get, you’ll always be my baby with little hands and a cute button nose. Every year, on your birthday, I remember the joy I felt when I held you in my arms for the very first time. Looking back on all the years, I am proud of the woman that you have become and even though you live only 10 minutes away and I could have visited or called you on the phone, I thought to make my birthday wish to you extra special this year with the gift of my love in print.
Happy birthday Elsa.
PS: Sorry I typed this. You know how horrible my handwriting is.