March 1 is a Special Day for Me

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No, it’s not my birthday. I’m a Christmas baby — my birthday is December 25. My brother Peter, three years older than me, was also born on Christmas. What are the chances?

Six years old?

Two birthdays on Christmas in my family. Plus, of course, there’s Christmas to celebrate, which was always a big deal growing up. Christmas Eve with my mother’s family, full of Italian seafood specialties; Christmas day with my father’s family, full of ham and potatoes (and jello molds). A tree to get and decorate, presents to buy . . . all of it.

There was no time to celebrate our birthdays on our actual birthday. So my clever mom decided my brother and I would get a birthday celebration on our feast days. The feast of St. Peter is June 29; St. David is on March 1.

When March 1 came around I got to choose my dinner and my mom baked me a birthday cake. I got my birthday presents that day. I loved having that day as mine.

Fast forward decades and that tradition is long gone, but March 1 still comes every year and it remains a special day for me. It’s my day. No one else really knows about my feast day, or they no longer remember.

So I do things I like on March 1. Today I spent time with my beloved family, I worked on a jigsaw puzzle, I played tennis. It was a fine day. I couldn’t ask for more.

There’s another birthday in my family on Christmas. My daughter Julia was born on Christmas morning — best birthday and Christmas gift I could have ever gotten. Her birthday gets celebrated on December 25, as does mine now, but really, it’s hers. What are the chances?

By David Klein

David Klein

Published novelist, creative writer, avid reader, discriminating screen watcher.

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