Just finished one of the close to last chapters of A Gift of Thought and oh, it amused me. I needed that today, too, because I’m dreading the rest of the day.

We’re celebrating my birthday tonight. I managed to get out of it on the real day, quite beautifully, by being completely sick with the illness that’s lasted now for approximately six weeks. Yay, me. Unfortunately, I’m not sick enough now to get out of it again. But I dread it. It’s so horrible when people do something really nice for you — or that they think will be really nice — and you have to pretend that yes, it’s really nice when actually it’s not at all.

My dad was delighted to get reservations for us at The California Grill. It’s been my favorite restaurant at Disney for years. You can watch the fireworks over the Magic Kingdom from the windows — it’s a beautiful view. I don’t know how many times we’ve eaten there — seven? Eight? We’ve had Christmas dinner there. I celebrated my fortieth birthday there. I ate sushi there twenty years ago, shocking my parents who had missed my evolution from incredibly-picky-eater-of-almost-nothing. It’s a place rich with memories. Rich with them. And now I’m going to be there with my dad and his girlfriend and the rest of the family and he really just doesn’t understand how desperately I miss my mom. Karen does. So she and I will sit there and pretend like mad that everything is fine and all is lovely and life is grand and it’s just swell that Dad’s in love and meanwhile, underneath it all, we will both know that there is a hole there that is never going to be filled.



But the chapter I wrote today made me laugh.