Yesterday was my birthday, and thanks to a very thoughtful friend, I received a delightful surprise! After closing my eyes and waiting until I was granted permission to open them, I saw before me the most unexpected and amazing sight – a birthday cake! I realize that for most people in America, a cake is to be expected on one’s birthday. Yet, for sugar-free me, it absolutely wasn’t.
It’s not that I have lived a deprived life. It’s that seven months ago I decided to say no to all forms of sugar. Since I hadn’t touched the stuff in 214 days and wasn’t planning to break my streak, I was astounded to learn that the cake was made just for me. It was my very first sugar-free birthday cake! Although it didn’t look it, I was assured that it was sweetened using only applesauce and stevia.
I was even further amazed to discover that the professional baker who had crafted this culinary work of art had done so not just on my birthday, but on hers as well. I couldn’t even remember the last time I had an actual birthday cake. What I knew for certain, though, is that I never had one professionally made. This… was a very special cake!
After taking several photos to capture the wonderful miracle that was before me, I was ready to cut into it. Taking a deep breath with knife in hand, I deliberated over the exact location to make the first incision. I was desperate to taste it, but I hesitated. I paused, reluctant to mar its’ beautiful exterior. Finally, I told myself that birthday cakes were meant to be eaten. Then, since I definitely meant to eat mine, I let ‘er rip!
My friend wasn’t sure if it was chocolate cake or white cake. Yet, when the knife slid smoothly through four layers of moist brown goodness, we decided it must be chocolate. After the second cut was complete, I laid the thick slice to rest on a dessert plate. To my delight, I saw that a creamy white filling embedded with fresh strawberries separated each layer.
I raised the first bite to my lips, still quite beside myself. However, it took only a few seconds of rolling it around in my mouth to discover that it tasted just as wonderful as it looked. It was delightfully moist and flavorful. In fact, it was everything a birthday cake should be, and I never would have guessed it was sugar-free! From there on out, both of our forks went flying until we had finished every last bit on the plate.
The moral of the story is . . . when you have the right people in your life, it turns out you can have your birthday cake, and stay sugar-free, too!