Happy Birthday Mom!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMy girlfriend, Tamarind, believes that everything happens for a reason and that that reason somehow improves your life. Until my father died, I agreed with her. There was nothing, nada, zilch, absolute infinity zero, that his death could have a positive impact on my life.
I was so wrong.
Because I was the apple of my dad’s eyes, my mom and I didn’t have much of a relationship. We co-existed in a kind of temporary truce. She was his wife and, me, his only daughter. I was, to put it mildly, the favored child.
He died suddenly and tragically in 1994. In 2008, after many requests, I agreed to go on a 28 day mother-daughter trip to Europe. Okay, think about it, 28 days with your mom in strange countries. I expected we’d quarrel and fight non-stop.
The opposite happened.
And I realized my girlfriend had been right. I had never had a close relationship with my mom, but that trip changed everything. We had a blast. Went twenty-eight days without a single quarrel. Got along like a zillion houses on fire.
Every single day, we got lost – I can’t tell left from right so that’s kind of obvious. But, we had such fun getting back on track. And we ate our way through the most delicious locations in France and Spain. We had three eleven course meals. All decadent and heavenly.
I’d loved my mom before that trip. But I learned to like her during our jaunt through Europe. The pic above is us sharing a meal at La Belle Etoille – the best bed and breakfast on the planet. They served foie gras done three ways every night. I was in gourmet heaven. And my mom went along for the ride.
Today is my mom’s seventy-night birthday. I lost my dad right after his sixty-second.
I am so grateful, mom, to have you here with me. I love you. I’m so proud of you and I only want a good thirty more years. So, take care of yourself.

Love always,
Your daughter,