This morning, while I was waiting in line to buy the Wii for the boys for Christmas, Mary Jo wrote the following on, and I must say that while it was not intended as a present, it may be the best birthday gift I’ve ever received.

It’s a wonderful day in the neighborhood….

I just re-read my introduction, and it sounded a lot more tentative than I feel…Today, on Joyce’s birthday, I feel so unbelievably happy and lucky that I could burst. I have the most incredible privilege of watching someone I love become who she really is. We both stayed up late last night talking, and today I said “let’s take a nap”….and we tried, but we ended up talking again. It amazes me to hear her say “I’ve always felt this way” (about being emotional, being demonstrative, etc.)…but she’s never been able to enact how she felt until now. And I get to be part of this newness, this awakening. How lucky can I get?

What an incredible gift….to be able to watch someone you love finally be able to follow her bliss, to become who she really is inside. Joyce has watched and supported me as I’ve followed my bliss for the last few years, doing something I’ve wanted to do since I was a child but could only afford to do recently (horsey things), and I felt so lucky to have such a supportive spouse. And now I get to support her as she does what she’s wanted to do since she was a child, but couldn’t “afford to” until now (probably in all sorts of ways!).

The kids decorated the house while she was shopping this morning with “We Love You Daddy!” and “Happy Birthday!” signs, and while we got Joyce some mundane gifts (warm pajamas, etc.), they each selected some treasures of their own and gave it to her. We’ll probably start talking to the kids in earnest over the break….but I cannot imagine these sweet, loving creatures having any trouble with someone who loves them so, and who they love every bit as much.

Ok, maybe it’s getting a bit thick. But today it really is a wonderful day in the neighborhood.