Mama’s Birthday Chuckles

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I can still picture this day, four years ago, so well. And it still makes me laugh!  I’m grateful for the memories, and for my dear mama. Today she would be 85. I miss her so much, but am so thankful to know that she is with Jesus now, having a glorious celebration in His presence, with Daddy and many other loved ones that have gone on before her…

September 5, 2014

Today is Mama’s birthday. And what an interesting party we had…

I baked a cake for her and went over for a visit. Mom sat with me and I asked, “How’s my Mama?”
Mom answers, “I don’t know. I didn’t ask her. Ask her? Esther? Where’s Esther?” She’s shouting now, “ESTHER!” (As far as I know Mom has never known an Esther.) Mom shouts, “CRAZY PEOPLE!” Then she starts singing random words.
I chuckle.

“Mom,” I say, “It’s your birthday.”
“It is?”
“Yes… You’re 81.”
“Eighty-one?” She says some words I don’t understand and ends with, “It’s possible.”

I start singing, “Happy Birthday to you…”
Mom shouts, “ME! NOT YOU!”
I start singing again, “Happy birthday to you…”
And Mom sings the next line in rhythm, “…said somebody but you don’t know who….” And we both start laughing.
I start singing again, “Happy Birthday…”
And Mom jumps in with, “…to me, Happy Birthday to Nina Fay….” And then she keeps singing but with different words and melody, “What a wonderful day…oh what a wonderful day…”

I write her name down for her and she says that it looks right. Then she suddenly bursts out singing, “What a friend we have in Jesus…” and sings the whole chorus word for word!

We gather around the kitchen table to have her blow her candles out. Dad says birthday candles have always been important to her, but she doesn’t want to be at the table now and she doesn’t want or know how to blow out the candles. He keeps trying to talk her into it.

Finally I say, “Mom, look at me, I’m going to blow out one candle and you blow out the other.” As she sees me blowing, I think it reminds her how to do it and she also blows one out. Hurrah!

She eats her cake, but is agitated and restless and wants to leave the table. At one point she shouts, “Go home!”
“Do you want me to go home?” I ask.
Mom cleverly answers, “That’s a good way to get there.”

We soon finish our party. I hug my folks and leave. And I’m thinking now, it wasn’t exactly how I pictured her birthday party happening—but it was full of love and laughter and music and cake. Mom seemed so clever tonight and made me laugh and laughed with me.

And I’m so blessed and thankful I got to make these precious memories with my dear mama.

Happy 81st Birthday sweet Mom! And thank you for always making our birthdays so special. I love you forever!!





  1. What a beautiful story…made me smile…but sad in a way thinking of my mother’s last birthday. Mom didn’t have Alzheimer but you could tell she was slowing down. My sister had a big special birthday party for her thinking she was turning 85! But, it was not her 85th but 84th. So many people came to celebrate with her….I am so grateful for my sister doing this special birthday party, because it was her last before she passed away. Thank you for sharing your story….it reminded me of my mother’s special day. I love the way you write about your mother….so lovingly.

  2. So beautiful…I know that when my Dad’s birthday comes around in December, I will think of his birthday last year when we celebrated in the way that we could best do. Thank you!

  3. Where’s the “love” button? I can’t just “like” this post. I can SO relate to this. I have so many memories of celebrating birthdays with my sweet Momma. She always made birthdays special for members of our family. You could be sure that she would prepare all of your favorite foods and would make you the birthday dessert of your choice. She tried very hard to make birthday wishes come true for her children and grandchildren. My Momma will be 85 in January and she truly hopes she will spend her next birthday in heaven.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing this. It reminds me so much of my dear mom. She is 87. I took her to the neurologist today and she was so concerned all the way there that nothing was wrong with her so she didn’t know what she would talk to the doctor about. It took me two hours to get her ready. The doctor was so kind and complimented her on her outfit and how well she looked. She turned and pointed to me and said, “That’s my daughter and she did all this. I didn’t even want to come and there is nothing wrong with me. Old people just get things wrong in their mind and you people just need to accept it and get over it.” Yes, birthdays and most days don’t always go like I would like anymore but she is still my mom and God is giving me the grace to keep keeping on.

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