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7 (and 45)

7 (and 45)

“Mommy… how did you choose my birthday? Why October 12?”

“Oh, I didn’t! It’s random. Mothers don’t generally get to pick when they give birth. I guess, technically, you decided when you wanted to be born.”

“Huh. I picked a good day, didn’t I?”

“Perfect timing. The day after daddy’s birthday.”

This is truly what I thought seven years ago when Mark’s birth was the cutest “present” ever to Feng. In hindsight, I did underestimate logistics challenges ahead. Every year, I’m scrambling to plan two birthdays back to back every year. They also often fall right before Thanksgiving when the entire population of Canadian is stocking up on groceries and I have to meet expectation with instructions ranging from “nah, I don’t need anything, I’m old, fuck Juliette, I’m getting old” to “I want a cake that doesn’t say cake but BIRTHDAY CAKE!”

This year, to top it all, Friday was a PD day (i.e. no school for Mark) and I’m swamped with three assignments due by Tuesday.

“Yeah, yeah, I know, daddy is the winner, he was born before me.”

“Not matter which day he was born, daddy is older than you.”

“So, how did you know I was ready to be born?”

“You… basically told me you wanted out.”

“And you listened to me?”

“Well, I had to! You kicked harder than usual. Like, hard. I couldn’t sleep. I was looking at the clock and eventually I got the message so I woke daddy up.”

“Oh oh… seriously?”

“Oh yeah, seriously. This is exactly the kind of situation when you’re supposed to wake daddy up. And you know what he said? ‘Oh, shit, I didn’t shave!’ So he went to shave and I turned my computer on. I went online, just waiting, you know. Oh, I remember I ate chips. Like, the entire pack of chips.”

You ate chips?”

“I’m human, okay? Although unlike you, I sit down to eat so I don’t make a mess. Anyway, it was a strange night. So we waited, waited, waited and then we drove to the hospital at sunrise. And then… andthenyoucameout—”

Please don’t ask for full details now.

“—and you were born at 11:04 a.m.”

“What did I do?”

“You screamed, ate and slept.”

“What did I eat?”

“Milk. Breast milk, actually.”

“And you put me to bed right away?”

“Why, was I supposed to let you watch TV? Babies sleep a lot!”

“What did you do?”

“I took a shower, went for a walk around the park and called grand-maman and grand-papa to tell them you were born. We spent the night at the hospital and the next day we took you home.”

“Was I still sleeping?”

“You woke up often enough but yes, you slept a lot. At least the first… three days.”

“What was I eating?”

“Just milk.”

“I don’t even like milk! Did you eat cool stuff when I was in your belly? You shared the food with me, right?”

Honey, I have high-res pictures of the placenta. I’ll share them when you’re old enough for that.

“Yep. I ate… the usual, I suppose. Same stuff I like now.”

“You made me eat veggies?”

“Tons of them. I was obsessed with celery for some reason. Don’t worry, I also shared burgers, fries and chocolate with you.”

“Oh. Thank you for that.”

“You’re welcome.”

“Did you take me anywhere cool when I was in your belly?”

“Well, technically Mexico. Then we went to New York City in the spring, and England and France in the summer.”

“That’s a lot!”

“You were in there for nine months, plenty of time to travel.”

“That long? Wow. Eh, we should go to England. I mean, you and daddy went but I didn’t see anything… cause obviously I was in your belly.”

If seven years ago, someone had told me I would have these kinds of conversations walking to the supermarket with Mark, I would have laughed.

Mark, life is better with you. Happy birthday, kiddo!

Two cakes, seven presents, six balloons, two cards, two songs and many pictures later…

Wrapping the gifts (yes, this one is for Mark!)
Wrapping the gifts (yes, this one is for Mark!)
Feng's birthday card envelope
Feng’s birthday card envelope
Letter to Mark
Letter to Mark
Feng's birthday celebration
Feng’s birthday celebration
Feng's birthday celebration
Feng’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration
Mark's birthday celebration
Mark’s birthday celebration

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