Today is your first birthday. I can’t believe a year has swiftly passed by amidst smiles and laughter. Last year this day your mother and I drove to Sunday market in the morning. She already knew you would be coming today so she did a quick shopping. She cooked lunch herself and asked me to drive her to the hospital. The doctor informed us that you were already on your way. We were asked to get admitted by 8PM and expect you by midnight but you were quicker. We ran back to hospital at 6 PM and waited for you in joyful agony. Your grandmother was with your mother and I was sent out to make bed in the ward for your mother and you. I paced in and out of the ward for two longest hours of my life and then at 9:09 PM I heard your first cry. Everybody in the ward looked at me and I felt like a celebrity; I simply said that’s my babe.
You continued crying but the door never opened. I was right outside the door waiting to look at you. A Nurse came out and closed the door behind her. She asked me to guess your gender. I told her it didn't matter. She insisted me to choose and I chose ‘a girl’ because your mother always wanted one. The nurse beamed at me and said, ‘Your wish is fulfilled’. The door opened and I was asked to come in. I couldn’t imagine how your mother would be but to my surprise she was smiling at me when I saw her. You were on a small bed suckling your thumb,one eye was wide open and the other was yet to open. You looked very funny and cute and I couldn’t help kissing you. That night three of us slept in the ward and your mother was shocked that I slept well while two of you remained awake.
Throughout this one year, it was always your mother who sacrificed her sleep while I enjoyed the luxury of not having a breast. However I always slept by your side and patted on your chest except for 15 unavoidable days I was out on duty. When I returned you didn’t forgive me for one whole night but next morning you crawled over me again and from that day on, I promised never to leave you.
As your birthday approached you showed us how strong you are; you started walking on your own and even your teeth are showing finally. But, by the day you are becoming naughtier, louder and faster; my face and your mother’s chest are full of scratches from your nails. In crowd, you embarrass us with your big farts, people think it’s us. Every day is fun with you among us and can’t believe I have lived without you until last year. Only today I truly understood the meaning of ‘many many happy returns of the day’. Happy birthday darling, may you grow into a wise respectable lady.