My beautiful Ava-Grace, in two short days, you turn 6. On Sunday, 6 years ago, on another windy Sunday in Cape Town, less that 12 hours after meeting your tummy mummy, I got a call from our social worker to say that you were on your way.
It was 05h30 on a Sunday morning when I got that call. I don’t think Daddy or I have ever showered and gotten dressed so quickly in our lives, by 7am we were at the hospital. I remember it was the scariest time of my life. It was impossible for me to believe, after so many years, so many losses, so many close calls with parenthood, we stood at the doorway that led to parenthood and I was so terrified, I was afraid to walk through.
I remember every moment in the 48 hours that led to your birth. My greatest regret is that at the time, I was too terrified to believe it, to revel in it, to feel joy and excitement like most expectant mom’s experience. I only remember feeling terrified. Terrified that this, that you were all a dream and I was going to wake up and find myself back in the nightmare of my infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss.
But your tummy mummy, she’s an amazing woman. Even during her labour, and in the emotional time after, she reassured me. She referred to you as MY daughter. Watching you being born, it’s the single most significant moment of my life. Nothing else measures up. Nothing comes close.
You are the most beautiful baby I have ever seen. I remember being scared that it would be hard for me to bond with you because you came to me so unconventionally. But Ava-Grace, I remember the instant I knew that my heart belonged to you. It was the very next morning, after you were born, I woke up, looked at you sleeping in the carry cot next to me and when I looked down at your perfection, in an instant, I was brought to my knees by the overwhelming love I felt for you. I knew, in that very instant, that I would stand in front of a speeding train to save you. I knew in that moment that every time my heart beat, every breath I took, it was all fueled, from that moment on, by you, all for you.
You are my Christmas miracle. 2009 was a tough year for mommy and by the end of it, I’d lost all hope, then just 12 days before Christmas you were born and that moment, you changed the course of my life forever.
You are Sunday’s child – fair and wise and good in every way and I know that life has great things in store for you.
Everything about you is utter perfection.
From your Charlie and Lola monkey bum shuffle – and I think you’ll understand now, why still, 6 years on, I call you my Monkey’s Bum…. P.S. check out how fat dad is in this video.
Your love of technology started young… and I think you’re going to follow in dad’s footsteps, with your love of technology devices and all things information technology related. You can operate You Tube better than anyone I know!
There are certain things about you I hope will never change…. like your sweetness and your kindness and your love of animals. It’s funny looking back and seeing how much you’ve changed and yet, still stayed the same, like…. your favorite animal is still a lion!
I miss you as a baby and a toddler, you were adorable, you were so damn cute. Even now, when I watch these videos, my heart hurts knowing that’s time we will never get back again.
So on Sunday, you turn 6 and while you’re not a baby anymore, you will always be my little girl. My perfect, sweet, adorable, loving, clever, gorgeous, miraculous, adventurous, tom boyish, little Monkey’s Bum and I will love you forever. There are no words that could ever come close to expressing the depth and the breadth of my love for you. When I have you in my life, nothing else matters. I love you to so much more than the moon and back, to so much more than eternity, my heart, it beats for you.
Don’t ever forget how amazing you are.
All my love, all my life…. my heart… my Monkey’s Bum! Happy birthday beautiful!