Today is my 43rd birthday. Tomorrow, my brother Bill will be arriving, and we'll be going up to Charlotte to rendezvous with my other brothers and sisters in order to have a joint birthday celebration with one of my sisters, whose birthday is three days after mine.
On the one hand, I have to say I don't feel much like celebrating. My mother's death is still hanging heavy on me and all the kids. It's a weird thing to be getting birthday cards and condolence cards at the same time. On the other hand, I think a family gathering to celebrate a happy occasion will do us all good after the ordeal of waiting through Mom's final illness. She wouldn't want us to be too sad too long. Here's hoping for a happy birthday, but I sure wish Mom could be there.