It's My Birthday

Today is my birthday.

In truth, it's my daughter's 10th birthday.

Every year since she was three, I have watched my only daughter, blow out her candles and consume a cupcake for breakfast. It's the annual, birthday breakfast of champions for the O'Brien children.

Seven years ago, on Elin's third birthday, our snot-nosed (literally - you should see the photo), daughter asked to eat one of her, prepared-for-preschool, cupcakes for breakfast. It was a simple request.

As upstanding parents, who don't feed our children desserts for breakfast, we responded without hesitation. Uh, hell, no. The cupcakes were for daycare and it would be ludicrous to let her to eat one for breakfast.

I'm not sure how it happened. It may have been outwardly expressed thoughts of my husband and me. Perhaps they were words telepathically sent across the kitchen. I may have protested. Maybe my husband protested. I have no clear recollection.

But somewhere in that kitchen, in the weight of an inevitable, forthcoming diagnosis, we let some of that weight go.

And let her eat cake.

My daughter is 10 today.

Today I celebrate living seven years with breast cancer.

And my children ALWAYS have a cupcake for breakfast on their birthdays.



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