I took this photo at Bethesda Naval Hospital on March 8, 1991:
That would be our daughter, Katelin, very soon after her birth. And that also would be my wife, Marcia, who was celebrating her own 30th birthday on the day that our family duo became a family trio. As a husband and a dad, that certainly made birthday planning easy for me in the years to come after that photo was taken. Even if it took a little extra effort to make sure that both of them were made to feel personally and particularly special on their shared magical day.
Marcia and Katelin’s dual birthday has always made it an extended holiday of sorts around our house, worthy of celebrations that have often gone well beyond the natal day itself. And, any personal biases set aside, I’m all in favor of their birthday being declared a National Holiday, as it is in many countries around the world. Marcia wrote about the legitimate reasons for that on her own website, here. (Short summary: They were born on International Women’s Day). It’s more than fitting that two of the most formidable women in my life celebrate their entries into this our mortal coil on the very same day that much of the globe acknowledges the achievements, accomplishments and arduous ongoing efforts of women to advance their own causes, the causes of their global sistren, and the well-being of the communities in which they live, play, love and work. Just perfect, on so many fronts!
Tomorrow, March 8, 2021, is their birthday again, of course, but it’s a special one that we’ve been tracking for some time, calling it “30-60 Day.” Katelin will be 30, the exact same age as Marcia when she brought Katelin into the world, while Marcia will be 60. As of that day, the total time that Marcia’s life has included Katelin will be greater than the total time that Marcia’s life did not include Katelin. A benchmark and landmark day, for everyone involved. Even me!
Many years, Marcia and Katelin have done a “Girl Power” trip together in March, just the two of them. As it turns out, that’s pretty much how we ended up living in the Sedona area, as the two of them did a yoga and spa vacation there several years ago, and loved it, and then Marcia and I went, and it was just as good for the two of us. The two birthday ladies had originally been thinking about going to Hawaii for 30-60 Day, but our Anno Virum put the kibbosh on that. So Marcia and I are visiting Katelin and her wonderful partner, John, in Las Vegas this weekend, and tomorrow morning, we will be driving over for a day’s adventure to Death Valley, California. Yeah, that’s sort of a strange and ironic destination as we celebrate a day of birth, but it’s also sort of counter-intuitive and wild, and that works in our family. Embracing our inner weirdos comes naturally for us, together or on our own.
I snapped this photo of Marcia and Katelin yesterday, at Valley of Fire State Park near Las Vegas:
Both of them are really, really good at smiling. I notice that, because I’m not good at that basic decent human response to external stimulus, being more prone to cheesy half grins than anything visually representing true joy and happiness in any given moment. Which isn’t to say that I don’t experience that joy and happiness, as I certainly do. I’m just not built to communicate it as well as the two of them do. Marcia and Katelin seize their days with gusto and grins, on their own, or as a team, and they enjoy doing so, and it makes the lives of everyone around them better, me most especially. Few things make me as happy as seeing those smiles together. Even if all that I can muster is a shy and crooked smile in awed appreciation of them.
I’m sure I’ll get a nice photo or three of Marcia and Katelin tomorrow on the actual 30-60 Day Trip to one of our continent’s most inhospitable destinations, and those will show up here at some point in the days ahead as part of my usual travelogue report. But I’ll be in the moment and not online when those snaps happen, so I wanted to get a quick post up today to explain how I will be spending my Monday this week, truly happy, truly blessed, truly awe-struck at the ways in which fortune has smiled upon me to have Marcia and Katelin in my life. I love them dearly. They mean the world to me. I’m proud of all they are, and all they have achieved. They make a difference.
So here’s looking forward to what the next 30 years will bring our way. I don’t know if this website (or any website) will exist in 2051, but if it does, I guarantee you I will be sharing a 60-90 Day Celebration Post on March 8 of that year, if I’m able to do so!