16 years ago today I called my mom from Alabama to wish her a happy 46th birthday. It was spring break, 1998. I was a senior. My friends and I thought we were old enough to handle ourselves for a week without our parents.
But I did get one thing right that week. I remembered to call my mom on her birthday.
She doesn't remember that call, but I do. I was sitting at the dinette table in our rental beach house, surrounded by my suntanned friends. The dinette table was white wicker and glass. The ocean beyond lapped at the sand. I twisted one hand through the phone cord while I punched the calling card number with the other. Ring, ring. My mom answered. She sounded so happy and familiar. I longed to be with her, like a kid stuck at a slumber party on the other side of town.
And now here I am, 16 years later, calling her from the other side of the world to wish her a happy 62nd. Again, I long to be with her, though by the grace of G0D I am making better decisions than I was back then. And by the grace of G0D I love my life.
Still, a girl never outgrows her mom.
So I wish you all the best this year, Mom. No matter how far away I travel, my heart will always be with you and Dad. I love you. Happy Birthday.