birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

Thirty-eight, and Counting

Our 38th anniversary was this month—two weeks ago. I forgot.

Instead, I had scheduled a dinner with a friend. We’d been trying to get together for weeks, and one thing and another had interfered—a bad cold, a family call, and clients. Finally it seemed we would get face-to-face.

The morning of March 8 my husband came to kiss me awake, “Happy Anniversary.”

I grinned.

Then, I gasped, “Oh no! I told Carol I could see her for dinner tonight. finally.”

He laughed, handed me two cards, and said, “This is all I’d planned so far. So, go ahead and have dinner with Carol—my anniversary gift.”

I winced and demurred, then kissed him again.

“Well, is that real love or what?!”

As Carol and I shared a bottle of bubbly, some seared scallops, duck confit and flourless chocolate cake, we talked about the difference between falling in love—which could never tolerate forgetfulness—and being in love. We toasted husbands who know how to share.

I don’t know if my husband was really and truly okay with my forgetfulness—I hope so. It seems so. I felt bad, and sad. And, I was grateful for his generosity in giving “our” day back to me. It was the most amazing gift, in its way.

We celebrated later—times two, movies and meals of our own.

We’ve had 38 years, and more. It appears we still have a good while ahead. What’s one little night compared to that? Self-justification? Maybe. Self-indulgence? Certainly.

Ain’t I glad I married him? YOU BET!

And, you can bet I won’t be forgetting next year—or the year after that.

Love Letter

Naked Or Not, Here I Am