The Anniversary Not Uncelebrated


Every year around this time I celebrate a sort of anniversary.  On the 29th of May many years ago, I suffered a traumatizing and life changing experience.  Each year since then, I have celebrated being alive somehow by going to amusement parks, spas, or anything that makes me feel spoiled and ridiculously alive.  I did this each year… until last year.  Last year I wrote about The Anniversary Uncelebrated, and the sense of assimilation it gave me.  It felt okay to let the day just be – not to deny it or defy it.

I expected to do the same this year.  I didn’t forget the day, but there was already too much going on in my life to give it more than a brief nod and then move on.

Two weeks ago my 18 month old broke the largest bone in his body and is still in a half body cast.  He has trouble getting comfortable and sleeping, and is very frustrated at being immobile.  On this particular May 29th, my husband was out of town, I hurt my back lifting my casted son, and I hadn’t slept in about two days.  My mother was in town, who also hadn’t really slept in two days.

Before the day had even started, it was bursting at the seams with tasks, stress, an injured toddler who refused to sleep, a preschooler to get off to school, and work to finish online.  It wasn’t until noon that I got around to opening the envelope left on my nightstand by Hot Nerd before he left town – the one that said DO NOT OPEN UNTIL MAY 29th.

Inside was a card:


Words cannot express how thankful I am that you are here.

Happy 10th Anniversary.

A decade?   I hadn’t even realized.  I had somehow stopped counting.

He also left instructions:

  • Look in nightstand.  Wear on ears.
Kick ass tribal phoenix earrings

Kick ass tribal phoenix earrings


  • Be home at 2pm.  Open door.  Enjoy.

As luck would have it, I finally got my youngest to sleep at about 1:30 and was desperate for a nap myself.  Minutes after my head hit the pillow, someone was at my door.  My sleepy grouchy face soon disappeared, though, as I found a cowboy at my door who began singing You Are So Beautiful To Me…

He was young and cute and nervous.  I giggled like a school girl the whole time.  I don’t know how, but my cheeks ended up wet.

If you've never had a singing telegram, I highly recommend it.

If you’ve never had a singing telegram, I highly recommend it.


  • Smell flowers.
  • Eat chocolate.
  • Do not worry about dinner.

photo (19)


Later that evening my favorite sushi showed up at my door.


  • Squeeze bear.
  • Think of me.
  • Close eyes…
  • Sleep…

You are safe now…

and loved.

The sleep part actually didn’t happen because of an unhappy and in pain toddler.

I was expecting the day to go uncelebrated again, and I was perfectly okay with that.  There were bigger things on my to-do list, and little people who needed me badly.  I found a certain freedom in letting the day “just be” last year.  It was not aggrandized in any way… and I was very alright with that.

Turns out this year marks a decade and it was celebrated… and grandly so…

and I am very alright with that too.

I am lucky…

Damn exhausted…

But lucky.







jenni chiu sig

22 responses to “The Anniversary Not Uncelebrated”

  1. Alison says:

    Your husband is such a sweetheart. Love how he planned your day.
    And I’m so sorry about your baby – hope he’s doing better!

  2. ardenraine says:

    You have an amazing partner! I just want to hug him and you and be on the red-eye so everyone can rest.

    I just can’t express how proud I am of him. And you know how much I love you.

  3. First of all you’re amazing and so strong. Secondly you have the best husband ever! Third of all I love those earrings. And lastly, that singing telegram guy is adorable.

  4. Katie says:

    Amazing. All of it. Your husband and his creativity. Ten years. But most of all…you. you are amazing.

  5. I am in awe! That is so amazing and thoughtful! Your husband is just incredible…

  6. MrsMuffinTop says:

    What thoughtful gestures! Good work, hot nerd!
    I hope your little guy heals quickly.

  7. Jessica says:

    find me his twin. He has to have a twin. He MUST have a twin

  8. Tanya says:

    Tears… Thank you for sharing

  9. EB says:

    so many tears – happy for you tears!
    such a sweet hubby!

  10. Kyra says:

    This made me cry – you are an amazing person. You inspire me in so many ways. And your husband…he appears to set the standard for what is good and right in this world. How lucky you both are to have each other. Hope your sweet baby heals quickly. xoxo

  11. Alexandra says:

    You amaze me. Women amaze me. The human race takes my breath away with what we survive.

    So much inside your brain, Jenni… I’m glad you can forget it and not celebrating it is a celebration, because you could go on after all that, you could go on and have just a day.

    You are here, ten years ago, would you have known?

    You, all of you, would be here.

    I love you.

  12. Angela says:

    Oh my, what a guy. Seriously so sweet. “you are safe now….and loved” So much love. Glad you shared and hope you get some sleep soon!

  13. Mindy says:

    Absolutely lovely. This made me a bit emotional.

  14. Wow, what a fantastically thoughtful man. I know I’m pre-menstrual but reading this post made me teary. I’m sure it would have even if I were older and my ovaries were all shriveled.
    It feels so good to be loved, doesn’t it?

  15. Kelly says:

    What a celebration. And moving story. Your husband sounds wonderful. I hope you finally go some sleep!

  16. Al_Pal says:

    Here via your comment on Erin KV’s FB.

  17. nanaof2 says:

    This makes my heart swell with pride and love for you and “The family” who is so loved by such a wonderful caring man! Moments are measured by the things that take our breath away, and keep us asking for more air! You are LOVED & SAFE because of the love we all feel for you!
    You are our breath of air you share with us! Thank you, Jenni !

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  19. […] you are a long time reader here, then you know that on this day, May 29th, I celebrate a kind of anniversary… and I often treat myself to something that makes me feel […]

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