For my entire life August 12th has been one of the most special days in our family. Even though Millie has been gone for almost five years I still can not imagine a year where I will not pause on her birthday and celebrate it.
Millie did not turn 93 today, but for 93 years people have known her. For as long as I am able to communicate, people will know her still. I feel the same way about my Grandfather. In our home we speak about Millie and Pop so often that there are some nights I wonder if the clanging of pots in the kitchen is Millie washing up or the clacking away of keys is Pop typing an essay.
Recently W and I were having a conversation about the idea of perfect. I had given W an apology, something I very much believe in doing when warranted, and within my apology I explained that parents are not perfect. We sometimes get frustrated and, as was this particular moment, have loud panic attacks. I told him we all try to do the best we can do, but if we realize we have not reacted well, we can ALWAYS apologize and work it through.
W countered by telling me that Millie and Pop were perfect. This amused me a great deal mostly because I knew it would amuse them. Pop would have responded with a laugh and then a forty minute conversation about his favorite flaws. He might have added in his famous story about the farting contortionist to perfectly illustrate how interesting imperfection can be.
Millie, on the other hand, she would have agreed with W. She absolutely believed in her perfection. It was the world around her that was flawed.
If Millie was still here I know she would be thrilled to see how much more passionate mother has become about genealogy. She would want to hop in the car and explore all of the new places mother has discovered. If Millie was still here she would watch W draw and create with wonder. If Millie was still here I would create for her a meal of Godiva chocolate and spend the day working on a crossword puzzle together.
Millie is not 93, but every year we take her forward with us.