Happy Birthday, Gregger! #62! Today we celebrate YOU! Not the life you lost. But the life you LIVED! The love you shared. The joy you radiated. Your smile. Your laughter. Your grace and humility. A son. Brother. Father. Husband. And friend. Everyone’s friend. Those lucky enough to cross your path loved you. Minutes, days, years, or a lifetime. A shake of your hand, a smile, a kind word. You touched peoples’ hearts. You left a mark. So we celebrate YOU.
2012…We celebrated at Dominick’s and went to Old Town to party with the young folk! What the heck were we thinking? I don’t think we lasted very long. Our ears couldn’t take it! But we laughed. Loved. And cheered.
2013…San Diego. Park Hyatt Aviara. Food tasting for Ashley and Tyler’s fabulous wedding! Didn’t get much better than that! Until…
2014…#60! I will hang onto this memory. FOREVER! Our last birthday. Best one yet! In forty years I never pulled off a surprise. Much less a BIG one! But I got you. And I got you good. After lying in a hospital bed for a week, you never suspected I’d be up for anything, much less a party. Your “real” birthday was quiet. No big shebang. You worked tirelessly at home all day. Orders. Ryan stopped by before work. I felt guilty. I didn’t want you to be disappointed. But I knew what was in store. The weekend. I made your favorite dinner. Chicken parm. Baked potato. Jamesons. Dairy Queen. Quiet night. But it was good. Better was yet to come. We had a “date” night Saturday. Old friends. Great friends. I needed your car. You loved when I drove you to work. I knew that wouldn’t be a problem. It wasn’t. More time to be together. Lucky me. I was a wreck. This day seemed like forever. We got to the restaurant. I could barely control my shaking hands, much less my trembling heart. We headed back, hand in hand. You were ready to watch the Suns game. I’ll never forget the shock when you saw those bleachers stacked high. Friends and family shouting, “Happy Birthday, Gregger!” But the surprises didn’t end there. First Ashley and Tyler. Jeff and Keena. Your bromance, David. And my sis, Suzy. Overwhelming. Love. Joy. A celebration of YOU. It was time. Little did I know that 7 months later I would be “celebrating” your life in a whole different way. This was good. Great. We danced. Laughed. And just let go. We Had Fun. You even said, “This is the 6th best night of my life.” I wasn’t offended. I knew where that stood. And 6th was GREAT. It ranked right where it should. Behind births and weddings. I got it. You were so right.
So now I continue to celebrate YOU. The YOU that makes me smile. Makes my heart beat a little bit faster. And makes tears fall when I try holding them back. My soulmate. My best friend. Thank you for blessing me with your love. I can only hope you felt blessed with mine too. Happy Birthday, Gregger. With Jameson’s in hand, Cheers to you my love! You made this world a better, brighter, happier place. And today it is sparkling! I love you!