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Birthday Party

The other night I went to a birthday party for a dear friend. Her husband orchestrated it with incredible tenderness. He asked the members of her puppeteer troop to create a show about his wife's life story, including her childhood struggles in school, her love for singing and dancing, and her deep love for little children. He handed out tissues ahead of time. That was a good idea.
He also recruited a six person band to accompany the show, which did its part to untie our heart strings. The innocence of the puppet children dressed in bright silk, the sweetness of the plot, and the honeyed voices all
worked together to offer a testimony to the woman he has shared a life with for twenty five years.
I have passed billboards that profess to offer the ultimate gift for a woman. Diamonds carry a hefty sticker price, and make a big splash. Tickets to a Broadway show can make a wife squeal in delight, especially if there is a promise of dinner beforehand. 
But the catch is that anyone could buy a diamond in a matter of minutes, and toss it in a glitzy bag with a bow. It requires no more intimate knowledge of the receiver than that she has a spare finger or bare neck. 
To give what this man did..... takes shared history. It cannot be bought with any currency save an ardent desire to know his wife's dreams, and struggles. As she watched, and wept, and heard the show about her own heart, she felt the inestimable gift of being understood and cherished.