While we were at the Baird Reunion in Idaho, my Uncle Alan wanted to get a birthday cake. "Is it your birthday today?" I asked. He told me that it wasn't until the 5th of June (it was only the 24th of May) but repeated that he wanted to buy a birthday cake. In store, I suggest he get a single piece of cake - just for him - and then we'll get him a cake for his actual birthday. Back at the trailer, I proceed to tell my mother about this strange event. She then informs me that Grandma (Alan's mother) used to make a birthday cake for him every year at the reunion.
Alan is a rare individual. He is single and devout - almost like a monk. He participates faithfully in his church and works hard. He has never been married - never even had a girlfriend from everything I can gather. He is quiet and sort of un-ordinary. He lived with his parents all his life, except for a brief time he lived with us. And of course, now, because Grandma and Grandpa are deceased, he finds himself alone in his already lonely life. I think he was closer to them than any of the rest of us because he knew them the most intimately, making their deaths difficult, to say the least.
Today is Alan's birthday. And I made sure the family (all 5 of us) were able to gather for singing, gift giving, and partaking of cake. I hope he enjoyed himself, because even though our relationship is an awkward one, I love him. And I want him to be happy.