Today is the birthday of my stepdad, Walter. My sisters and nieces and I will take him to lunch this weekend, however I wanted to celebrate him on his actual birthday.
This quiet man with a sparkle in his eyes and a keen sense of humor married my mom ten years ago, joining a family that is anything but quiet! That can be intimidating, I’m sure, and yet Walter doesn’t fuss about the laughter and chatting and small children underfoot when we gather together. He joins in for a time, and then slips away to watch a movie in the other room. Or he ushers the youngest members of the family into the big backyard where they can play under his supervision.
He joins us for celebrations and birthday dinners at restaurants and the annual Halloween party that my sister, niece and nephew create. He’s a good sport, and always shows up in costume. We would excuse him and just enjoy Walter being there, having fun, but if he’s going to participate in something, he does so, fully. That’s how he is.
I looked up Walter’s name:
Walter, when you express yourself, you most wish to follow the divine law of love. You have great persistence and hate to give up. You are charming, magnetic and intuitive. Your spirituality has been important to you throughout your life. You are bold, independent, inquisitive and interested in many subjects. You know what you want and why you want it.
You are intuitive, with a deep reservoir of wisdom and knowledge. You have strong leadership abilities and tend to lead by example. You look for ways to help others, provide service to others, and you seek to find purpose and meaning for your life. You give to others and then sometimes seek solitude to replenish your energy. You look for opportunities to continue learning.
I see my stepdad in those words. I know his story. His life hasn’t been an easy one. And yet he perseveres, guided by his spirituality and innate wisdom. He’s always curious, interested in many topics, and he is a giving man, especially of his time. He selflessly helps others, volunteering at the hospital, and serving on the military honor guard at the funerals of veterans.
He inspires me, more than he knows. Today, Walter is 88 years old, and he is the most fit and active octogenarian I know. He and my mother have traveled the world in the last ten years, because he loves her, and she loves to visit new places. He gives me hope that I too still have plenty of time to explore the globe. And he encourages me, by his example, to live a healthy, full on life.
Happy birthday, Walter! May you have many more blessed years. I love you!