Today my little darling. You turn four. You have given us four years of your company (and an extra 10 months within me). This little unknown and feisty body that grew inside me was you – how life was whole for me without you I cannot recall.
“I don’t remember when I was born” you tell me forlornly one afternoon this month. I hold you and tell you that no one remembers their birth, but I can tell you the story again. Your eyes are happy and you listen delightedly to the tale of the day we met you. And here we are; four years later – four years ago today you made me a mother, you were placed on my chest all bloody and screaming and I was overwhelmed with the honour to be yours. I reached down and felt this brand new life that was entrusted to us. What a beautiful, bewildering and magical four years we have had in your company; growing alongside you.
At four years old you constantly have me in awe. You ask questions that make me think, your mind exploring depths I haven’t expected. You take a sip of your water and ask about if that water will make your tears and why there are tears when you are sad. I look at you and tell you that there can be tears when you are happy too, like tears when I look at you.
Your memory has blossomed and I am constantly reminded that you are watching my every move. “You told me I could go be the one to press the elevator button at the library next time” you say and I vaguely recall that I did. “We’ve been here before, when Scarlet had her party” you say and I think back to that day nearly a year before and look at you in wonder.
You like: swinging high on the swing, dresses & leggings, red shoes, sushi, dancing, princesses, love stories, pretending to be a mother or midwife, ‘learning’ your brother, controlling your brother, cuddles, long hair, music, kimbra, dressing up (including make-up), bear hunts, wearing gumboots, watermelon tea, long pretend phone calls with me, baths with food colouring, naming street art, baking, cleaning (!) and never ever ever being alone in bed.
We celebrated your birthday today in Manila. Our last day of our trip to the Philippines. You had been asking for a ‘barbie’ cake and we came pretty close (sans breasts and make-up). We paid to have her made into this princess cake which you have talked about for over a year. Day after day you’ve sat on youtube watching cake making tutorials and said with pleading eyes “Will I have a cake like THAT for my birthday?”. When you rounded the corner to see your cake today -never have I seen you so utterly excited. You were so happy with this masterpiece and I was so touched by how happy you were I nearly cried. Yes, over a cake, motherhood has done things I can’t explain to my heart.
I am so happy to have shared this day and the four years that have come before with you my delight.
Happy Birthday x