30 January 2013

Happy Birthday Joanne.

Source: Creations Photo (Edmonton)
Dear Joanne,

Happy birthday friend!

Truth be told, we should celebrate your existence every single day. But since social norms pooh-pooh such extravagance and adoration, then my birthday blog will have to do. Feel free to read it every day, especially when you are feeling sad or low.

Here are some truths about you (some that you probably don't see in yourself):

1) You are stunningly beautiful as you are! Yes, you. I know you don't often think that, but take a good look at the picture above. That wasn't just a random-happens-to-be-great photo of you. That is how you look to us (well at least Steve, Marina, Mark and I) every day.

2) You are a fabulous mother! I know that lately, maybe, you haven't felt that way. Trying to juggle work with motherhood is hard on the best of them. But understand that if children are a reflection of their parents, then you are doing a damn good job. Marina is smart, loving, caring and at her worst, is still better then some kids at their best. Mark and I witness the love you have for your daughter when we visit. It is why we will strive to role-model ourselves after you and Steve with our own children. Don't feel like a failure if things don't work out as you plan. You offer Marina more than a roof over the head and food on the table. You offer her love, courage to grow, and wisdom to know what is right and wrong. Doesn't get much better than that.

3) You are a wonderful wife! I can't speak for Steve, but I can speak for what Mark and I observe when we visit your house. We see a relationship of love and respect. We see a relationship of humour and trust. We see a relationship that is perfect it its imperfections. We see that no matter what, your relationship with Steve (as both wife and co-parent) is the most important thing to you above all else.

4) You are a wonderful daughter! You take care of your elderly mom. There is not one part of you that doesn't show love and respect the wisdom and tradition your mom has given you.

5) You are a true patriot! You love Canada. You are a strong patriot. You speak out on issues, not to complain, but to make the country better. You are patriot, but not in a smug in-your-face way (which I know you detest). You are confident enough in your own identity to be respectful of other countries. You care enough to want to leave a better country for your daughter.

5) You are a wonderful friend! Joanne, you are truly the best friend one could ask for. You know me - not just a dimension of me. Because you know me, you let me be me. That is all one can honestly ask from a friend. If that were all you offered, that would be enough for anybody. But you offer so much more! We share the same humour, and the same style of scathing bitchiness. You got my back and I've got yours. You have enriched my vocabulary with such gems as bonerous erectus. We have travelled, journeyed through life, and experienced amazing things together. You inspire me to be better in many ways (least of which, a better blogger).

Still my favourite pic of us dorks.

This list barely skims the surface of all you are. You are smart, loyal, funny, witty, etc..

So here's the deal Joanne. When you are feeling not good enough (too fat, a bad mom, a bad wife, a bad friend, a bad person, just plain bad), come back to this post.  Recognize that those who love you (least of all me) see the best of you.  There is nothing wrong with wanting to improve yourself, and I will be right there with you, trying to improve myself. However, appreciate the here-and-now, and all that you have to offer. Because you offer a hell of a lot to the world baby! And nobody puts baby in the corner (yep...I am a dork!).

I'll be by your side every step of the way my friend because I love you and you are my siiiissssteeeerrrr! (Aside: will this ever stop being funny? Nope!).

To quote the Golden Girls: "Thank you for being a friend, traveled down the road and back again, the heart is true, you're a pal and a confidant."

Happy Birthday Joanne!


Your dorky BFF Danielle.


Joanna said...

Wow, Dani -- this is beautiful!! I'm so totally honored that you've written this... and I'm so totally flattered, too.

Seriously, you make me sound way cooler than I actually am.

The next time Marina says to me, "Mommy, I don't want to be your friend anymore," I will definitely pull up this post as a reminder that things are going to be okay. LOL

And maybe I'll make her read this, too. :)

But seriously, this is really beautiful and touching... and you made me tear up, ya jerk. :)

Dani said...

Yep. total jerk!