My wife, my best friend, and I have been married for 30 years. We first met when she auditioned as a bass player to join the band I fronted. I joke that I married one of the guys in the band. Yes, we’ve been married for 30 years, but we’ve been friends for 40 or more years.

The band practiced at my studio in the basement of my home on the near west side of Indianapolis. I remember one evening after band practice going out to dinner when one of us asked the other if we were dating. We decided we were. Only a short time after, I would be gone for a week, and she offered to house-sit. She never left.

When we first lived together, it wasn’t unusual to have Sunday dinner at her mother’s, joined by her brother and his wife.

Sunday Dinner at Mom’s

One Sunday in late September, we were invited to dine. We shared wine, ate a beef roast, and generally had a good time. Near the end of the dinner, her mother brought out a cake and candles. It was a birthday cake. To be more specific, it was my future wife’s birthday cake. I had no idea it was her birthday. I’m sure she’d told me sometime when her birth date was, but she hadn’t told me recently. You know, like warning me before we went to her mother’s that it was a birthday party for her.

Happy Birthday to You!

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not passing the blame. It was definitely my bad, and boy, did I feel it as we all sang Happy Birthday and her Mom and brother handed her presents. I don’t remember what I said, but I know it was apparent that I was in the dark.

The one upside to this story is I’ve never forgotten her birthday

Photo by Richard Burlton on Unsplash