I was ecstatic. I had wanted a girl desperately.
"Are you sure it's a girl?" I asked, not wanting to have my hopes dashed at a later stage.
"Definitely," said the friendly lady doing the scan. "Just take a look at the burger. See, it's very clear- you're definitely having a girl".
Your daddy panicked. How would he keep potential boyfriends and suitors at bay. He wanted to protect you, his little girl, before you were even born.
His protective instinct intensified the moment he saw you. You were barely a minute old, when he ran off after the doctor and nurses who had taken you away to clean you up and do the routine checks. He wanted to make sure that they would not drop you or hurt you accidentally (never mind his wife who had just been through an excruciating 14 hour labour- you were clearly the new lady in his life).
My early memories of you were of a sweet little girl, who slept for long stretches at a time and didn't give much trouble at all. You were always your daddy's girl, clinging to him, never wanting him to leave your sight.
My fondest recollections are of you dancing. You were so graceful for a toddler. I was amazed at how you'd invent little ballet steps, which would look so authentic- as if you had been taught. You floated about the room, so light on your feet- I could watch you for hours. And your lovely little voice. I remember you singing Josh Groban songs- inventing your own words along the way.
Just before your fifth birthday, your daddy asked what you'd like for a present, and you answered, "Anything daddy, even a shoelace will do".
As you grew older, people started to notice your agility. "Why isn't she enrolled at gymnastics or ballet class?" we were asked by more than one person. You still love dancing. Like your brother, you love imitating Michael Jackson and have become a huge fan ( which shows that you clearly have developed good taste too).
You have developed a kind and loving nature, which is why you are one of Aisha (2)'s favourite people in the world. Your mischievous smile and quick wit are of your most endearing qualities. Though you managed to get through the September formal assessment without employing any of the study methods I taught you, you still managed to walk away with Special Certificates for Maths, Natural Science and English- all without losing your cool the way your mother does.
You practice your karate both passionately and playfully and are now learning the second kata, while still having fun. And your beautiful voice now constantly fills the house with your sweet rendition of Adele's 'Someone like you'.
Although you're just a little girl, I am in awe of so many of the admirable qualities with which you have been blessed.
My prayer for you is that you grow into a pious God-conscious young lady; who lives her life with integrity and by the moral code according to which she was raised. May you always be a wonderful obedient daughter; a loving, loyal and supportive sister, cousin, granddaughter and niece and a strong pillar in the community.
I pray for your life to be a blessed one. May God give you the strength to overcome any obstacles in your path and may He hold onto your hand tightly so you may never waver from His path. May He fill your life with love, light and His blessings in abundance.
I know that your birthday was not everything you hoped it would be. And you may not have received the fanciest birthday party or most extravagant gifts but you, my dear girl, are so blessed to have so many people who love you so deeply.
We all love you so much, our amazing little TEN year old!!!