We went to a birthday party a few short weeks ago. A milestone birthday, a "the doctors said this child would never reach this age and look at her now" birthday. A party where the birthday girl sat proud in her wheelchair, waving her arms and shaking toys, getting excited about her presents and making sure Mum was paying her her full attention at all times. A party for family and friends, classmates and cousins, a real celebration.
I've watched this little girl since she joined the girls' nursery school, watched her change and grow, watched in amazement as she developed the ability to hold and shake toys, melted at the sight of her beautiful ear to ear grin, smiled as she fussed and fretted when ignored and then grinned and giggled once firmly back at the centre of things.
A little girl, not that dissimilar to Mog last year and the year before, but somehow changing and building her physical abilities, starting out in the same wheelchair Mog had and managing to injure herself in just exactly the same way, wrapping her arms around the bars and trapping her head and being a gorgeous blonde mini-Mog in many ways. But learning to control her arms and hands and loosening up where Mog has stiffened. Making exciting progress; infinitesimal perhaps for those not familiar with our world, but whole feet for those of us used to measuring inchstones not milestones.
This morning that little girl lost her battle with an infection and now that smile will never light up a room again. She made it to her fifth birthday, she had her big party and was the princess for her day. And the future was suddenly looking like a possibility. And now it isn't any more. Please pray for her family.