November – one of my favorite months

Now some of you know that November is one of my favorite months because my birthday lands in it. In fact, we often refer to November as my Birthday Month, because I pretty much try to celebrate all month long. 🙂 But November is a grand month for other reasons too – Thanksgiving is waiting there at the end of the month, and back when we had our home, that holiday was always filled with lots of family and fun. Each year since we’ve been on the road Thanksgiving has had a different flavor, but each one was very special in its own way. Another good thing about November is that Christmas is “in the air”, but it hasn’t taken over every store and airwave. Quite. Yet. But the best part of November is really about the Birthdays. Because as our family has grown, so have the number of November birthdays.
Hayley is 5! It used to be that November was mine, all mine. That was pretty long ago, though, since we’ve been saying Happy Birthday to BIL Fitz for about 40 years and SIL Sharon for about 35. Then 5 years ago we added dear Hayley to the family and just two years ago along came Madelyn SagePumpkin Maddie_edited-2. This year we also got to say hello to another new family member – my new great-nephew, Noah, born November 17th.
But there are some other dear folks that I share my November birthday-month with. (Or should I say, with whom I share my birthday month? :)) My birthday buddies, Connie and Bonnie, and I have been meeting together sometime during November for as long as I can remember. We go back a long way – back to those having babies days. We each had baby girls in 1976 and watched our lives intertwine over the years. Almost 30 years ago I moved out of the “neighborhood”, and although I was only about 15 miles down the road, our young family eventually found a church closer to home and we lost some of the easy connectivity that we had been used to. But still, we stayed in touch and somehow, perhaps wordlessly, committed to getting together at least once a year during our birthday month regardless of how much we saw (or didn’t see) each other otherwise. And as we got older and life got busier, we found that our once a year gatherings was one of our best days of the year. We would worship together, go out for lunch, and end up at Connie’s for birthday cake and catch-up. We did a lot of laughing, a fair bit of crying, and some serious praying. We saw each other through some rough patches in our marriages, a divorce, open-heart surgery, the death of our parents and some dear friends, and lives that sometimes seemed to be spinning out of control. We rejoiced with weddings and grandbabies, celebrated milestone birthdays, and reminisced about days gone by. These dear women have been my safe place. And even when we only met for that one day of the year, it was as if no time at all had gone by. Since we’ve been on the road, we haven’t actually been able to meet during November. But by and large we’ve done pretty well at getting together whenever I land in town. It’s been a while, though, since I’ve been back in town. And as November comes to a close, I’m missing you, my dear sisters in Christ.
Hope YOUR birthday month was filled with folks that you love, and that the year ahead is full of blessings.
And I PROMISE we’ll be eating cake together before the next November comes around!

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