Have you ever received a gift that you knew you would treasure for the rest of your life? A gift that you could never put a price on? A gift you just can't stop talking about and showing everyone? A gift you call, the once-in-a-lifetime gift? I did, but let me start at the beginning...
December 5 is my birthday. It's a day I look forward to every year. I think it comes from me being the first child and the only girl. My mother always made a huge production out of my birthday, and I took that into my adult years.
This year, I made absolutely no plans for my birthday. I knew that I would be on vacation, but besides some much needed sleep, I had no plans. Jason knew when my birthday was, but he was not one of those persons who went crazy over birthdays. Actually, he has always treated his birthday like any other day. So me going on and on about mine being in few days was something new to him and he kept making fun of me.
I spoke to Jason on the eve of my birthday around 8 p m., and then went to bed. At exactly midnight, my phone rang and it was Jason telling me happy birthday. He said he wanted to be the first one to tell me happy birthday and that made me smile. We talked for a few minutes and then I went back to sleep with a big grin on my face. I woke up to my children singing me happy birthday, and asking my age before they all left for school. Jason called then to say he would be busy today, but I should be ready at five because he would be taking me out for dinner. I asked him why five because that seemed very early for dinner, and he said we had a far way to go. I contained my excitement and started my usual birthday ritual. I went to take my picture and have breakfast at my favourite spot and proceeded to claim the day as mine.
I got home by 3 p.m, and started getting ready for my mystery date. I had no idea where we were going, and it took forever to get dressed, because he wouldn't give me any hints and I didn't want to be over or underdressed.
He called at 4:30, to change the pickup time to six because he was still caught up at his office. At that time, I had already put on my face and clothes, and was just waiting for the sound of his horn to put on my shoes. I hid my disappointment and took off my clothes since I had over an hour more to wait. I must have dozed off at some point while waiting, because the phone woke me at 7:10 p.m. with Jason on the other line saying how crazy his day was, but he was on his way.
When I saw him, the first thing I noticed was that he looked tired. He apologised again for his tardiness, and we headed out. Before we got to the end of my street, he yawned three times. I asked him if he was OK and he said he was just tired but once he got something to eat, he should feel better.
We headed out onto the highway and he yawned again. I told him that I didn't want him to drive so far if he was tired. He kept insisting that it was my birthday and he had promised. I asked him then if the restaurant was closing down tomorrow and he looked at me weird and said no. So I told him that we could go another night. With all these crazy drivers on the road, I would rather go out another night and live to see my birthday next year.
He finally conceded, called and cancelled the reservation, and we headed back to my house. When he drove past it, I asked him where we were going. He said not because we couldn't go to the restaurant he had chosen didn't mean we couldn't have dinner. So we ended up at the Sugar Mill restaurant at Half Moon. The evening that started out so poorly, turned into an amazing night.
As I mentioned earlier, Jason doesn't celebrate birthdays, so I was not expecting a gift besides dinner. Well, I didn't get one gift, I ended up with five. The first gift I got was a Chanel Chance perfume, which I loved. The rest included trips to Ocho Rios, Negril, and Hilton Rosehall. But it was his final gift that brought me to tears. Whoever said big girls don't cry have never met Yanique Quest.
He gave me my final gift on day five, and it was a compilation of all my Yanique's Quest articles from the Flair magazine, that he had cut out, and bound together in a portfolio. The moment I saw it, the tears started flowing. He said that he had wanted to give it to me on my actual birthday, but he couldn't locate my first article. That's actually why he had been late for dinner that night, because he had been trying to source it. He hadn't been able to, so he decided to just print it off the Gleaner's website.
All I could think about was this man spending his quality time cutting out newspaper clippings and the whole process of getting it bound and looking as lovely as it did. The thought that went into this gift is what brought me to tears. At that moment, I had so many emotions, I was at a loss for words. I told Jason how much I appreciated the last five days, but this moment, sitting in his car with my portfolio, was the one that would stay with me for years to come.
At that moment, I felt like Cinderella when the prince came knocking at her door with the glass slipper. This was definitely a feeling I didn't want to lose or forget. Since I know he is reading this as he does every Monday, let me just say thanks to Jason for making my birthday a special one. Kisses and hugs to you this Monday, Jason ... you are truly appreciated!