A Birthday Rainbow

Okay, Mom, what was the best present your child ever received on her birthday? Forget the Barbie Dream Houses--or in today's world a Nintendo DSi, and remember something smaller...simpler...maybe even magical.

When our middle little one, Macy, turned seven this year--it was a typical day. The Grandparents came to the annual party, aunts and uncles arrived, Macy spent the morning fussing over the balloon colors and rearranging the streamers--and I spent the day before and the morning of the party worrying about presents and whether the lasagna would be cooked well enough.

As usual, the September weather was too chilly for much time outdoors--but, we all had a fun time. Macy opened her presents graciously (after years of practice), fell in love with the Monkey Pillow Pet that she had wanted for months, and began to dive into the other boxes and gifts in turn. It was a good day--but nothing earth shattering. There was not a present on the "most sought after" list--and I would be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed that I had not done enough to create a special day for such an amazing little person.

The party guests left and I had resolved myself to a bit of the party cleanup when one of the girls reminded that we forgot to "launch" the birthday balloons. (A little tradition where we let go the number of balloons of the child's age into the evening sky after the birthday party.) Off we went to the front yard to release the balloons.

Then it happened. Our oldest daughter noticed it first. Above the sky in front of the house, there was a perfect rainbow. Aside from a few sprinkles, there hadn't been any rain to speak of the entire day. Macy looked up--with a smile that I wish I had on camera--and announed that she "got a rainbow for her birthday". It was the first rainbow that Madelyn, the "baby" had ever seen--and the first full rainbow for the other two.

It was a good day--and Macy received the best present that I could have ever imagined--an unexpected, almost miraculous gift from nature.

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