Bob would have been 45 yesterday.
He died just 4 days before his 40th birthday, so he will remain forever 39.
At the time of his death the proximity to his birthday was awful.
We had already ordered a cake so my sister and some friends and I stood around the small layer cake with purple and yellow flowers and smelled the faint lavender and lemon scent slowly fill the room. "Happy Birthday Bob" was joyously written across the top. None of us knew quite what to do as we huddled around the kitchen counter and stared at the cake as if we expected it to tell us what to do next.
Now I think the two dates being so close to each other was a stroke of genious on Bob's part. These important dates can be recognized in one crazy week of emotion. (I also would like to thank Bob for dying in the spring when there are signs of new life everywhere instead of the fall or winter when it is difficult enough to endure the long dark nights and bare trees)
We have established a wonderful ritual to celebrate the day that Bob entered into this world. Henry and Arthur and I get together with Bob's mom and sisters and we make pizza using Bob's recipe and his KitchenAid. Then we set off balloons into the universe. Now that the boys are older they write notes that we attach to the balloons and we watch as they drift off, bringing good wishes to the cosmos.
It is important to honor the day Bob came into this world. Without him I would have never experienced the Pacific Northwest or discovered how much I love camping or eaten red peppers or had Henry and Arthur. Without Bob this world would have been a lesser place.
I am sorry he wasn't here for his 45th birthday. I am sorry the boys and I couldn't sing to him and go on a bike ride with him afterwards. I am sorry he wasn't here to see Henry ski down his first mountain in Colorado or perform in his first talent show.
But I am so grateful he was here and that I had the great luck to meet him and be his friend and wife. I take all Bob was with me and am a better person and parent for it.
Thanks for checking in-