It is very special that Julie and I share the same April 10 birthday. Julie was born on a Sunday in 1983 in Scottsdale, Arizona. The night before Julie’s birth a large group of friends joined us for quite a celebratory evening in the wonderful Paradise Bar & Grill in downtown Tempe. Wonderful food, drink and friends. Julie’s wasn’t due for at least another week.
The next morning after church, I received a beautiful shirt as my birthday gift. By the next Sunday, I was having a picture of me, wearing that shirt, taken with Julie in my arms. I still have it in our bookcase today. God had decided He was giving me my most monumental birthday gift ever, the birth of Julie.
Over the years, I still contend my preparedness for this wondrous event was greatly exaggerated in a negative light. Yes, I was a bit ragged that morning. I, also, admit to watching the Masters on TV between contractions, but I was there to comfort and encourage Julie’s mother in those moments of need. It was not an easy delivery and Julie’s mother deserves great credit for her grit and determination. Because of the difficulties, the delivery came in an operating room just in case.
I had been assigned a seat by the head of Julie’s mother with little mirrors to view the birth. As the doctor raced in from another delivery, he grabbed my arm and said, “Come on down here and get a really good look.” Boy, I did. Out came Julie with long, long dark hair. The hair has been rubbing against the heart monitor attached to her head leading the staff to worry about Julie’s well being. The minute the doctor saw Julie’s long hair, all worries ceased.
The shirt I wore in 1983 was kept and pulled out for another picture with me holding my then 18-year-old daughter in my arms. Yesterday, Julie turned 27 and is just as special to me as the day she was born. She is as loving and caring as anyone I know. She also has been confusing and challenging. Both aspects have been truly blessed gifts from our Savior. She has remained a delight. Now, as Julie closes in on the end of a circuitous college career with a great boyfriend, I have never felt better about her future. She recently had a meeting with our Pastor to discuss future plans for her and Tim. In doing so, she showed just how mature she has become while remaining so young at heart.
It was a great birthday for both of us, and I pray we will share many more. God bless and keep us both. All my love, Julie.