Happy birthday our dearest little 3 year old daughter,

As we have done before, we celebrated with cake baked for you. I hope you would have liked it. Because of your brother’s allergies, it was a vegan banana cake. He enjoyed it with some coconut ice-cream. We made a garden scene this year with coconut grass, teddy bears, lady birds, and butterflies (one flew away from the cake cooling rack).

The Clemantis (Dr Rupert) that your wonderful midwife gave us flowered for the first time this season on your birthday. It is still such a delicate little plant – at the end of each season, I am uncertain about it appearing again. It seems to me that uncertainty is something I have been learning to accept more and more. I want to say that I am learning to “resign” myself although I don’t like the connotation of resignation as pessimism. I feel I have given up struggling against uncertainty (at least some of the time!).


It struck me that this had been something that I had learnt from you when your brother had a significant allergic reaction on your birthday. We had bought some special vegan treats to have a morning tea for you and I picked the cashews off a ginger slice that I have had previously. I usually don’t give it to Bear but this time he reached and put it into his mouth before I could stop him. While he didn’t have any of the cashews, the trace amounts that remained were enough to have him breaking out in blisters and hives over his face and body. He was so calm as I bathed him to reduce the reaction and gave him his antihistamine (only his second dose, ever, because of how careful I am usually) even when I was crying. Bear remains so happy even as he lives in this uncertain world.

There is never a day when you are not with me, in my thoughts and in what I say to others. For example, I am often asked if Bear is my only child or my first born, to which I always reply truthfully – that he has a very special sister who was born first. So, it is not just on your birthday, but on every day, that I celebrate, in small and large ways, that you are such a large part of our life and that as tiny as you were, you changed my life and continue to change my life in such huge ways.



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