HUGE SIGH OF RELIEF.
And we had the party. Everyone but May and Jason made it. They were working. Of course. And we missed them sorely.
So it was Lily and the boys and Vergil and Jessie and Hank and Taylor and Anna and Jerry and Lucia (Hank's otro parents, as Lynn used to say) and me and Mr. Moon.
The menu was simple.
Chips and salsa.
Key Lime pie with whipped cream.
The shrimp I got were so beautiful. Here's what they looked like before I peeled and cut them into pieces-
Here's what Vergil's salad looked like after he built it.
Hank wanted it salad bar style and so that's how we did it. There were bowls of lettuce, chopped red peppers, quartered boiled eggs, cut-up Havarti cheese, tiny seashell pasta, beautiful mixed cut-up tomatoes, black olives, and goop. And avocados. And shrimp.
The boys got a frozen cheese pizza. Don't worry. We baked it. Then Gibson got on my lap and ate shrimps and cheese and seashell pasta. Then he asked for a bowl of noodles. He got them.
Owen decorated the pie with candles. I did not take a picture but here's what it looked like when Hank and Gibson blew out the candles.
"Make a wish!" I said. You damn well can't waste a wish so I always remind the birthday person.
Owen did not want pie. He wanted a purple cow but I had no sherbet. "Would you like a root-beer float?" I asked him.
I made it.
He told everyone who was interested, "Mer spoils me."
"Speak the truth and shame the devil," I told him.
You know that you're living a life of meaningfulness when you can lock eyes with anyone in the room and trade an unspoken message. From every one of my kids to my grandkids to my husband, to Anna, to Taylor, to my ex, to his wife, to my son-in-law.
Lock eyes and know that they know what you're thinking and that they're thinking it back.
And that at any time you can hug and kiss any one of those people and be hugged and kissed back.
I do not want a lot of friends. I do not care for casual social intercourse.
I want real. I want, I-know-you-and-you-know-me-and-we-love-each-other.
Mr. Moon and I had a moment on the porch and we kissed and I bit his lip and Owen was hiding behind the door and he saw us.
"I saw you!" he said.
"Yes," I told him. "Boppy and I were making out."
"I know!" he crowed.
And he laughed.
Love is good. That's all I have to say about that. Love is good and it changes as we grow older and our babies become our friends and Jessie laid down on the bed and I palpated her uterus and we tried to get that little bean to move so that I could feel him but he was lazy.
That's okay. I know he's there.
And soon enough, he will know I am here too.
And he will be part of all of this love. As will Lily's baby. Someone asked Owen tonight if he will be in charge of all the children at our parties when the new babies are born and get bigger.
"I guess so," he said. And he will.
I'm tired. But I will sleep well tonight, knowing that Mama Hen has her babies safely tucked away, that my grandchildren, both born and un- are also safely tucked away and that all of us are fine.
And that Boppy and I will be sleeping soundly together, and we will know that no matter what, we have done our job and that more love leads to more love and has led to more love.
Happy birthday, Hank. Thanks for being the first one to show me what love really is and to continue to show me what love really is and to bring us all together on this night.
Love...Ms. Mama Moon