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Yesterday was

by on February 20, 2013

The anniversary of my son’s birth.

Tomorrow is the anniversary of my brother’s death.

My son had just turned one when we lost my brother but we knew we were losing my bother before my son entered this world.

Just mere days after I found out I was pregnant my brother found out he was HIV positive.

He’s been gone for 18 years now, but it only seems like yesterday on this day for me. It feels that way every year at this time.

There were still remnants of a birthday party for a one year old all over the house when I got the call that my brother had passed.

If you never been part of a birthday party for a one year old….that FIRST birthday party……then imagine the aftermath of a Frat house styled party without the booze and naked women and clean up can take days because you are finding “left bits of party” all over the place.

Two days after that first birthday party, I tried to hang onto the phone as I slide to the floor——- as my dad told me my brother was gone—— and noticed chocolate crumbs and blue icing on the wall behind where my son had demolished his first birthday cake.

Still to this day it seems surreal that at the moment I was hearing of an earthly life ending I was looking at the last bits of a “just getting started” earthly life celebrated.

I’m sitting here this morning looking at the remnants of a birthday party.

19 candles hurriedly yanked out of a cake so the cake could be cut. Icing and crumbs smeared on the table and a slice of cake left sitting on the table with a candle in it.

It’s a tradition that got started by one of my daughters on my son’s second birthday. That day she cut her slice in half and put it on the table and added a candle that came off the cake to it. She sat it on the table and asked me to not move it.

I cleaned around that slice on the table for two days, and then asked her if we could throw it away.

She said

“No mom! Please nooooooo! We have to keep it for Uncles Bub’s birthday!”

Uncle Bud’s birthday…just another little twist of life’s iconic ironic knife…..my bother passed just a week before his own birthday.

It had been a running joke that no matter when I went into labor, I was to cross my legs and hold the kid until Uncle Bub’s birthday! It would be Uncle Bub’s legacy!

It was a melancholy joke.

My brother knew his chances of seeing his nephew grow up were slim, none of us would know he would only hold his nephew twice before he got so sick he couldn’t hold him.

Shortly after my son was born my brother’s health started to deteriorate rapidly. We would go see him but he didn’t have the strength to take his nephew in his arms. Or maybe he was afraid to. I’ll never know because I didn’t ask.

The slice of birthday cake sat on the table with the candle until the day of Uncle Bub’s birthday.

I got up the day of my brother’s birthday and it was gone. I asked the sleepy-eyed little girl at the breakfast table what she did with it, she pointed out the window to some birds in the yard.

I could see them pecking at the slice of cake, candle still in it.

I sat down at the table with her and watched the birds.

We didn’t say anything to each other; we just watched the birds eat the cake. At some point my son toddled out of his bed and made his way into my lap and my oldest daughter sat down at the table and seemed to just “know” what was going on.

The four of us sat there and watched as the birds danced around the cake slice, peeking and chirping and having a party.

I didn’t manage to hold off giving birth to my son on my brother’s birthday but we managed to find a way to give him his legacy.

To this day on my brother’s birthday a slice of my son’s birthday cake is set aside until Uncle Bub’s birthday and then it goes candle and all to the yard for what is now days called the “Birdday party.”

Bidrsday party is still  few days out but…….

Happy Birdsday Uncle Bub, we miss you.

From → Random Weirdness

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