Birthday diving boards

Happy birthday, Mum. We’ll remember today’s celebration for weeks and months to come – the wonderful meal, the family members gathered in spirit if not in person, the phone calls, the little gifts, the old letters and photographs, the being startled about exceptionally sharp memories of some things, and somewhat foggy ones of others – whilst the important fact of the matter remains our shared enjoyment in reminiscing.

Your birthday, like all birthdays, is special. And birthdays are special because they provide occasion for fond re-membering on the one hand, and also act as a kind of diving board into all the living that’s ahead of us all – saying, with Dag Hammarskjöld, ‘for all that has been, thanks: for all that will be, yes!’ We’re shaped by the passing of each and every year we remember, rooted in family and friendships.

And taking stock of how our years have made us who we are, we take especial note of our having been dearly loved in the course of our journeying. And as we think on being loved we realise that birthdays – and all our days – are still bringing new life to birth – yours and ours. Happy birthday, Mum. Thank you for all that you are. And may your everyday be a happy day.