Today, Gabrielle celebrates her fourteenth 39th birthday! Many happy returns of the day! Those were the words that Pooh used in wishing Eeyore a happy birthday. Never exactly understood what “many happy returns” meant. Does it mean that when you take that ugly fuzzy sweater with sewed on pom poms back to Target because it’s just not your style, the clerk takes it back very cheerily and thanks you for coming in? Or perhaps when your husband gives you an iron for your birthday and you wrap the cord around his neck because it wasn’t something more romantic, will the clerk take it back, even though it has blood on it? Like I said, many happy returns of the day! Here's a picture of the announcement that her very artistic mother put together to signal the big event:
Isn't she a cute little tyke?
But back to Pooh and Eeyore. I just got through reading the story about Eeyore’s birthday again. As those folks who write movie and book reviews love to say: SPOILER ALERT! If you don’t want to know what Eeyore got for his birthday, stop right here and skip down one paragraph to see how the birthday gal is doin’…Anyhow, back to Eeyore…He’s quite sad because nobody remembered his birthday. No candles, no cake, no pink sugar. But Pooh comes to the rescue, even though he is a bear of very little brain. He grabs a jar of honey. Also tells Piglet who comes up with a big red balloon. Sadly, things don’t work out too well. Pooh succumbs to temptation and eats all the honey and Piglet’s balloon pops. But they give the gifts to Eeyore anyhow. Pooh tells Eeyore the empty jar of honey is now a pot to put things in, but he doesn’t have anything to put into the pot. Then Piglet gives him the popped balloon, which serendipitously just happens to be the perfect thing to put into the pot. The chapter ends with Eeyore contentedly putting the balloon into the pot and taking it out over and over again. He’s one very happy donkey. And I suppose that’s what gifts and birthdays are all about. You may not get what you were expecting, but somehow, things just seem to work out, possibly even for the better. After all, a full balloon wouldn’t have fit into the pot to put things in. And what possible use could a donkey have with a jar full of honey? Ever seen a donkey eating honey? For that matter, ever seen a donkey putting a balloon into a jar? But that’s beside the point.
So back to Gabrielle, and her amazing birthday. It’s not shaping up to be what we would really like. She has horrible nausea today and nothing that I am encouraging her to eat has any appeal to her. She is sitting across from me with a glass of prune juice and a water chaser, hoping that it will soon work its magic (will leave it at that). She has pretty bad abdominal pain which is bearable much of the time till she moves or breathes deeply, then it gets worse. This has been going on since before the dual chemo treatment on Friday, but has gotten more intense and is much more discouraging. We are hoping for a big improvement today, as it is her birthday and all.
As for birthday plans, those are up in the air. She and Daniel went to Swanson’s nursery yesterday where Daniel bought her a yew tree in honor of the Taxol and all. We are going to plant it today. And I get to start asking questions of Daniel and Gabrielle such as “what’s new with yew?” And “how are yew?” “What do yew want for your birthday?” and wishing her a “Happy Birthday to yew!” I’m going to try to get her to eat one pancake, but good luck with that. I suspect the day will involve a couple of walks and lots of TV time. As we aren’t having a huge celebration (though we will indeed find some ways to dress up that prune juice), we have decided to postpone the festivities till all this chemo stuff is over and do a “half birthday” bash six months from now in August. Won’t that be fun? So today, I’ll let her pick the card games we play, the TV shows we watch, and she can even boot me out of my favorite chair. And I won’t make her do the laundry, mop or scrub the toilets till her birthday is over. After all, I am a caring and attentive husband.
So, here’s to you, Gabrielle! You’re strong, you’re beautiful, and you’re gonna have a great year! You’ve done so many amazing things since your grand entrance into the world in Yakima way back when. Now, bottoms up with that second glass of prune juice!
Oh! Breaking news! Got her to eat breakfast! Here it is, complete with plastic fork (hates the taste of metal these days)...