Cindy’s surprise 60th birthday party.
Cindy Wilson writes about a wonderful birthday surprise!
My birthday was fast approaching and not a word had been said about it. After the stress of the last year I really wanted a party to thank so many of my friends for their love and help and support during my ordeal.
At least 4 months prior to the date I had told all my friends to keep the weekend after the 07/05/09 free, as I was sure my husband would give me a party.
Ever since I was a little girl, even though I had three other sisters, I was the only one to ever get a birthday party. From an early age I just took such joy in the event, that my parents would make sure it was the greatest day of the year for me. To this day my birthday is celebrated the whole month of May with friends taking turns to cook lovely dinners for me, or we go out for special lunches. Sometimes it even drags into June. What fun!!!
However, getting back to the present day, the seventh of May was rapidly drawing close and I had given up all hope of a party, as due to the economic climate my husband had reduced work hours and I naturally assumed this meant tightening the purse strings. Friends started the usual round of special dinners and lunches for me, and Russell, my husband, told me he would take me out for a meal, and as we had just started learning Rock and Roll maybe we could have a dance somewhere. Well that was good enough for me, and I had already informed my friends there wasn’t going to be a party after all, so I settled into making the day special with a new outfit in shocking pink, a haircut which was almost the best present after being bald for so long, and I also had my nails done. Promptly at 6pm we left our house but had only gone a little way when Russell pulled over and said he had to blindfold me so our destination was really a surprise.
Still totally unsuspecting, because we live only 15 mins from town, I thought we had arrived at an upmarket restaurant where you can dine and dance. Trying to negotiate stairs while blindfolded is a feat in itself and I managed to trip down at least two of them so he took off the blindfold after I promised to keep my eyes shut tight. The delicious smell of food wafted past my nostrils and I immediately came to the conclusion that I was at a friends’ house and they were surprising me with a home cooked meal. Russell opened the door and said I could peek and at the same time poppers went off and at least sixty people yelled "surprise!".
Judging by the photos taken my mouth dropped and yes I nearly leaped out of my skin. Every person there came up to wish me and give me a hug and to this day I still carry the love and warmth in my heart. My amazing children had each done their part in the organizing and catering and my son had terrorized his band members to practice till their fingers dropped off. Everyone loved them so much that they got many offers of playing at future events, and it made my heart swell with pride.
This is where I say "but wait there’s more".
My darling husband had decided to celebrate not only my 60th but also our 40th Wedding Anniversary, and had arranged for a Marriage Celebrant to perform the simple ceremony that meant so much to me. He had written all the words, including that he promised to stand by me in good and bad hair days and even no hair days. Also he had the Celebrant read Kahil Gibran’s poem about marriage which is my favourite, the one that says "And stand together yet not too near together For the pillars of the Temple stand apart and the Oak and the Cypress grow not in each others shade".
There wasn’t a dry eye in the hall but more than one husband approached him later to growl at him as their wives were already nagging. In fact one friend of ours was moved to rush out the following Monday and buy tickets to the Monet exhibition in Wellington with a week’s hotel accommodation and air fares thrown in as a 40th Wedding present to his wife, saying Russell made him feel so guilty.
So that was my exciting 60th Birthday and Marriage Vow renewal and it still leaves a warm glow whenever I think about it.
(Posted June 2009)
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