Mark is 40!


Recently, Mark had his 40th birthday. His mother and I planned a surprise birthday party for him and it was great fun exhausting planning it out. He said I had him surprised right up until he got the call to come down to the lobby of the hotel we were at. Until then, he had no clue. Here’s how the story goes…


A few weeks before March, I contacted Mark’s mom and asked if she was interested in throwing Mark a party for his 40th birthday. After expressing her shock that he was actually turning 40 (her first-born, you realize), she quickly warmed to the idea and the planning started.


It was decided that it would be a surprise and I would work all the details of securing the location and getting Mark there with no hints to him. For the most part, that worked out great. I had to tell a few lies to Mark but, in the end, it was totally worth it. One lie was the amount of money I needed for the weekend getaway to Idaho Falls, where we had secured a banquet room and hotel rooms for the weekend.


Jen worked (at her job as CNA) the night before and was exhausted but a real trooper that weekend. She ran errands, ran around with me and generally kept things moving when I forgot to eat and my sugars dropped too low. A packet of sugar and some chips and I started feeling good enough to continue.


Most of us dressed in black, as if for a funeral, and my boys wore their best suits. I dressed up as if a widow going to a funeral and even Jen got into the fun, wearing a black ball cap with black lace drooping down as if she were a friend of the widow. We played it to the hilt! I had great fun.


After the party, Mark went out with one of his brothers and had a few drinks. A night to cut loose and just do whatever he wanted while the family was well taken care of by myself and Jen (with me popping out to take Mark and his brother to eat something after they had their fill of drink and then making sure they both got to their hotels safe).

(I don't think I've ever gotten so many pictures of Mark laughing and smiling before. It was awesome!)

(I don’t think I’ve ever gotten so many pictures of Mark laughing and smiling before. It was awesome!)

When Mark left to go back to work, I reminded him not to be sad on his actual birthday (the 20th of March). I wanted him to remember the awesome party his family had created for him and not be sad about being at work on the day of his 40th birthday. He assured me he had quite a few memories and probably wouldn’t even notice it was his birthday.

And that’s exactly what I wanted to achieve.


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