Why can't you be normal, Dad?
There are few people in this world that I think are as sympathetic, as soft but as sterdy and empassioned as the man I share my birthday with. Well, technically, he shares it with me and Hunter, and hundreds if not tens of thousands of other people through the world, and it'd be wrong of me not to acknowledge those people while talking about Mark because that's kind of how he is, as long as I've known him - always ready and sure of the things that he fights for, that he loves - that he teaches his kids and the people he chooses to be in his family. If there was a person that I would want to turn into a sustaining, viberent energy for people to just have, to have that kind of compassion and integrity, the world would be so much better off if there were more than just the one (although, just having the one, it makes the rest of us who know and love him feel like we're more special for it).

He's courageous and loving, tender and careful with the people who might need that from him and course with people who prefer those kinds of gloves, but always honest. Not faltering in the way that he looks at things or the way that he documents things for the rest of the world. Mark is one of the best people the world has had to offer in a very, very long time. At my worst, he has stood shoulder to shoulder with me, he's shielded me, he's laughed with and at me with a soft, beautiful and calming kind of noise that rumbles low out of his chest and he's just one of those people who feels like home. A home for whatever and whoever he spends his time on, whoever he picks up along the way. In my own rambling way, I'm trying to say that he's one of the personifications of love that I've met. He's cultivated a warmth that I'm always in awe of.

Mark is the sort of person that has made me, on several occasions and probably many more depending on how long he'lll et me hang around in his life, forget the gaps between songs. When I've asked him to, when he's asked me to - when there's been dancing, it always felt like it could have been an all night kind of thing. Time slows down and I've wanted to burrow between breaths and bone and be happy that there's him in the world - because, well, selfishly, even if he can't sleep because of the state of it, he makes things easier. He's like my 45's and my favorite sweaters, the peonies that I always want and the way that blankets feel five minutes before I absolutely have no other choice and have to get up, all warm and wrapped up and happy.

Which is exactly what I want for him on our birthday (sharing with Hunter is fine and all, if you like that kind of thing - but the fact that I can say that I was born on the same day as one of my dearest friends is one of those little things that makes everything brighter when I think about it). I want him to have fun and to be loved, loved completely and without apprehension, the way that I know he loves every day. To find a quiet where his thoughts can slow down to an easy beat and he can remember his favorite songs and smile. Laugh with the people he loves. To get what he needs, to enjoy what he has, know that he's loved beyond measure absolutely always without question.

That is to say, I wish for him to have these things all of the time, but especially today. Especially when there's official call to celebrate a person being in your life. So, happy birthday Mark, I love you very, very much. And I hope somebody remembers to give you your whacks. ♥