You know you’re getting older when you can’t remember anymore how many years of birthday lunches you’ve had with two close friends. Sitting with Judy and Denise today for Judy’s birthday lunch, we joked about how we’ve been doing this for years, decades even, and who knows when it started? The three of us get together for lunch on each of our birthdays, give (the non-birthday dames) and receive (the birthday gal) gifts, and always end with some kind of split-three-ways chocolate-infused dessert.
Over the years, we’ve birthday-lunched ourselves through delights and worries, one of our divorces, three of our ongoing marriages, six of our collective children and two grandchildren, hair-pin turns in the workplace and wide avenues of great vacations along with the disastrous family vacations we’ve endured (especially me on this one). We’ve unwrapped lots of girly soaps and aromatherapy bath salts (but not for Judy, who isn’t into them), occasional earrings, all manner of little boxes made of clay, wood or glass, and many books of poetry.
I see us 25 years from now, still heading out to lunch in November, December and May — our months — pushing ourselves on our walkers into restaurants, maybe adding a little champagne to lunch because what the hell, and a bigger hunk of chocolate to share. “How long have been been doing this?” one of us will ask. “Can’t remember,” another will answer. No matter. We’ll have great-grandchildren to worry about, earnest discussions on what songs we want sung at our funerals, and little boxes elegantly wrapped and small gift bags with some token to commemorate age and change, friendship and the moments we share a birthday.