Wednesday is your birthday. You would have been 54. I have been trying to remember the many birthdays we shared in the years before your diagnosis, celebrations of a life well lived, surrounded by love, good friends and laughter. It's the way I want to remember your day, though I admit I also find myself caught up in the sadness of last year at this time. The day of your birth in this world, the day you celebrated your very existance should be a day of hope and joy. And that is how I want to celebrate it this year too.
So a birthday party is planned at your favorite restaurant. A gathering with family and dear friends to celebrate you and what you meant to all of us. Probably a few tears will fall, but I know we will all be remembering the Ellen who was full of life and quick to laugh. The Ellen who was always ready for a good time, a good meal, and perhaps a glass of good wine. The Ellen who would spend hours fixing her hair, putting on makeup and going through every cute outfit in the closet to wear for the occasion. The Ellen who would lite up a room when she walked in. That's the birthday I want for you.
I am asking our friends and families to send you a birthday wish. When you were so sick they would join together and send you messages of hope, prayers and love. The positive energy was always felt and you were so touched by those reaching out in kindness. You felt loved and I think that love helped you find the strength to deal with the fear, to find some peace around it. Honestly, I think the love of your family and friends kept us both going when things were hardest.
So, sometime on Wednesday, a moment of stillness large enough to contain a loving thought, a prayer, a memory of Ellen full of love and laughter. A message sent in streams of love to you on your special day. A birthday you would love.
I know you'll be the happiest one at the party.
Happy Birthday dear Ellen.