That Day…That Birthday

Dear Grandson,

And then there was that day when we remembered you, we talked about you, we wondered when to call, and then we went to bed.

And there was the next morning when I sat up in bed – stunned and dismayed. We didn’t call you, our darling grandson, and say, “Happy Birthday”. We didn’t post a fun photo on Facebook and join your well-wishers on social media.

Oh, man! I can only hope that your card arrived in time and that you remember getting your gift months ago. If not, you might feel ignored by us.

But wait!

It was bound to happen sooner or later. Memories get a bit shakier as the years roll forward. Sadly, last year we called and talked to your cousin on his 21st birthday but forgot to send his card and gift until months later. And  many years ago we called your uncle at 11:30 the night of his birthday (having forgotten all day). We were lucky to get in under the wire.

I know. I know. Birthdays are important in our family. We have set a precedent of observance and attention. But I don’t want to make this seem like a tragic event. It mustn’t sound as if we don’t love you if we miss calling you on a special day. That seems a very fragile marker of love.

And you know the real score. That we love you to the moon. Every single day of the year. Wherever you are. Whatever you do.

From now on I call “olly olly oxen free”* Don’t judge our affection by such token things. Just send us a text and remind us. That’ll work.

And l’m going to keep this in perspective. Although we may not remember to note every milestone in your life, we remember the joyous day when you joined us on this earth. We gratefully hold many precious memories of the days we have shared.

And, as always, we wrap our loving thoughts around you – a shield and armor from all bad things and an never-ending warmth and support for everything  you do.


*I had no idea that “All outs in free” was spelled this way…but you can look it up here.



  1. Having got used to being greeted on birthdays some of my nephews and nieces have got upset when I had forgotten or was away from my diary to send timely greetings. I too have used the excuse of getting old!


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