A letter to my daughter on your 9th birthday

A letter to my daughter on your 9th birthday

I can barely believe that today is your 9th birthday. My heart bursts with pride at all that you are, have been and will become.

Your smile, laughter and energy light up every room, and even during the darkest times of which we have a fair few of lately, you remain a beacon of light and positivity radiating the joy, innocence and can-do attitude of your childhood years.

If only we could bottle that and keep it!

But I’m only too aware that time is slipping through our hands like sand as you become ever more confident, independent, and mature. As I slowly must step away and let go every day to give you the room to grow, flourish and bloom.

This year has been transformational for you, as you brim and beam with confidence as we emerged out of the darkness of the pandemic. Your first taste of travel again – to Turkey, then the US and Germany with more to come – has been an absolute delight to savour. It’s supercharged your whole being and it has been wonderful to see.

You’ve become a walking, talking powerhouse and I have to stop, marvel and pinch myself that nine years ago you came screaming into this world, out of my very being. I have no words for how mind-boggling watching that journey unfold before my eyes is as a mother. I’m totally blown away by it.

You have taken this new found confidence and a strong sense of self everywhere with you – to school, to extra curricular activities, to our family life and yes, even to the funfair where to my utter amazement you have become a total thrillseeker begging to go on all the scariest rides!

From a shy and uncertain little bean, you have emerged from your chrysalis in all your glory this year. I was proud beyond belief when you wanted to try for your dance school’s show team, got through the audition and then rehearsed like mad to be on stage in the West End later this month.

Then there was that totally unexpected solo in your school choir when from the group’s crescendo suddenly there was silence and then a pure voice alone in the room. It was yours and I fell apart at the seams with emotion. The stuff of total goosebumps in motherhood.

Yet you are still my little girl. Still needing my reassurance. Still unsure and craving comfort at times especially as we navigate our way as a family through my BRCA1 diagnosis and upcoming preventative surgeries.

And I am there for you readily, to take you in my arms and hold and kiss you like that newborn baby we brought into the world nine years ago. As I do so, I marvel at how big everything of yours has become – your face, your features, your limbs – as you inch your way towards being a tween with all that sass.

Although I try and stay in the present moment and savour the sweetness of the now, our conversations and cuddles, I know all too well how quickly this is all slipping away as time hurtles by. So for now I’ll make the most of every minute and bask in the warmth of your childhood love before more changes come and this moment too will feel like a distant memory.

So to you – sweet, sweet E – on your 9th birthday, keep that magic within you and hold onto it tight. I am so grateful and proud to be your mother. I am so lucky at how all the hard work and challenging times in motherhood and life have led us to this.

Never stop shining like the bright star you are, and always stay fierce…

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