I tried to ignore the fact that Herschel’s birthday is today. I tried saying, “It’s not such a big deal.” Ignoring the dates didn’t work. Ignoring the feelings also didn’t work. I grew anxious, unsettled, and sad. When I finally saw the connection between the feelings and the time of year, I decided to face the facts: This is birthday time. It would have been Herschel’s 61st birthday today (Hebrew calendar – 7 Nisan; English date is 4/13). And he’s not in this life to celebrate it. And that’s sad.

The first year we were married, I had strung a happy birthday streamer in the house. He had told me he never had a banner in honor of his birthday. So every year, I hung a streamer. That action became part of my Passover prep – strategically placing a “Happy Birthday” streamer in the kitchen! The vibrant reds, blues, yellows, and greens sure brightened up the home! And our moods.

For Herschel, there’s no streamer this year; there’s no birthday celebration. I can only pray that there’s a big celebration Up Above for his accomplishments in this world.

Birthday time – a time for reflection, a time for celebration, a time for gratitude.

May we all merit long, healthy, productive lives!

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