Sunday, December 21, 2008


Today is Darrell's birthday. It hasn't been a very difficult day yet its hung in the background of my mind.

There were so many things I thought about writing about, I had a whole list of things sorted out in my mind about what he taught me and how he made me a better person, but instead I sit here in my robe remembering one of his most special birthdays.

Darrell hated his birthday being in December. He said that as a kid he always got combination Christmas and Birthday gifts. He rarely got parties because of its proximity to Christmas. So when we got married I promised myself that I would always make a big deal out of his birthday. One year we were living in Little Rock and we hadn't been away alone together in a very long time. With quite a bit of planning I planned a weekend away to Hot Springs. I found places for the kids to go and made reservations at a bed and breakfast. When Darrell wasn't paying attention I packed a bag for him and myself and hid it in the car. The only thing I told him was that I had a special day planned for us.

We left Saturday morning with me driving; he had no idea where we were even going but about halfway there I told him we were going to Hot Springs. We got there and wandered around the small downtown, eating lunch at a little cafe. About 4:30 I told him there was somewhere special I was taking him for a snack. The bed and breakfast, Lookout Point, served drinks and cookies at 5:00. I drove there and he was completely clueless and confused as to why we were parking outside a bed and breakfast. When we got out of the car I opened the trunk and showed him our suitcase. He was very pleasantly surprised.

It was wonderful weekend, although very short but Darrell loved surprises and he knew how much effort I had made to make it all happen and to keep it a surprise for him. I think he would say it was his best birthday ever. So what does that have to do with my robe?

The bed and breakfast was a very nice place and they had robes and slippers for the guests. The robes had a super soft outside fabric and the inside was French terry cloth, a very soft, fine terry cloth. When I put the robe on and loved it, reveled in it actually. When we got home, I opened the suitcase up to unpack and a robe was in there. I looked at Darrell in surprise and smiling he said "I knew you loved it so much that I bought it for you."

So I sit here tonight, tired but enveloped in love, finding it hard to believe it was only 5 years ago. Its seems like a lifetime.


debi said...

My dear sweet friend....what a loving memory!

I smile because of the love that comes through your words remembering this moment that you both had together.

I feel as if I been given the honor of being able to share it with both of you!


"Happy Birthday Darrell"!

Brandy said...

I can see why you were meant for each other. It's obvious that you both cared a great deal about the other...thanks for sharing.

The Johnson 5 said...

I can feel your love for him through your words and I also feel the comfort your getting in that robe!

You are such an amazing woman, thank you for sharing these wonderful memories with us!

annie kelleher said...

happy birthday to darrell in heaven. i read more of your story this morning and it moved me to tears. i am at once so sorry for your loss and so moved by your courage. thank you for sharing this story.

Denise said...

I am just finding out about your husband...I never knew your story until coming to your book site today. What a wonderful memory to cherish, but how hard it must be for you...I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing and I am sure that others are being blessed because of it.

Thank you for always making me smile~

B said...

That is a tender sweet memory that so few people ever have with their spouses. You are blessed to have a husband like that, and he is blessed to have a wife like you. And I'm not talking past, because you still have each other. I hope the rest of his birthday was good to you.

Mandie said...

Denise, I can not wait to read your entire book. You are a great writer and have a way of telling your story. Can't wait until it is in print and I can read it all. What you have on your blog has brought several tears.

Marcy said...

Denise...I have visited your other blog but I've some how never been here....
I am so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine. You are such a beautiful family and I have a feeling your blog will be one I visit often now that I've found it.
Blessings to you-
Marcy from CCAI WCP group

~Katie said...

I sit here covered in goose bumps. This is true love! Thanks for sharing!