On January 15th, Ellie should have turned three.
There should have been a little girl with pigtails, sassy mouth and big blue eyes, waking us up at the crack of down to remind us that she was now three. There should have been a big Princess or Dora, or whatever, birthday party. There should have been cake. There should have been candles. There should have been someone to blow out those three little candles. And there should have been a little girl there to open presents. There should have been laughter and giggles. There should be a picture on my camera of Ellie at exactly 12:42pm.
But there wasn't any of that.
There were balloons. At the cemetery. There was singing. At the cemetery.
The presents we bought were three stuffed animals for Ellie's Light, a purple blanket for her "room" and a candle that smells of sugar- what I imagine our three year old would smell like. The presents weren't opened. The card never read.
There were cupcakes. But no cake. This mommy couldn't bear another conversation with a baker about the birthday girl.
There were tears. Not because I can't believe my baby is growing up so fast. But tears because my baby isn't growing up at all. Because we never got to see Ellie do any of the things that birthday girls do.
Birthdays are supposed to come every year. But sometimes they don't.
I really can't picture you as a three year old. But I bet you'd be a little mother to all three of your siblings, but a little bit of a puppet master. Smart, funny and adorable. I know there would still be that sparkle in your eyes. Honestly, I don't like to think of you as a three year old. I like to think of you as our chubby, sweet and endearing nine month old. I like to think that some day, we will get to see you blow out three candles on a pink and purple birthday cake. I like to believe that we will get back every moment we have missed with you.
I am so grateful for that day three years ago when you came screaming into this world. From the moment I laid eyes on you, I knew you were something special. You were magical from the minute you arrived, and there hasn't been since, that I stopped believing that you were here to serve a special purpose. Your mere existence forever changed our lives, and so many the lives of so many others.
You are in a word, amazing.
Happy third birthday to our beautiful, beautiful girl. I miss you everyday, every minute.
Love you forever and ever. And ever and ever,