It’s (was) my birthday(25th March) and I’ll cry if I want to…. am I still crying???

Today is my birthday. Hooray 🥳

But yeah, not so much for me.

The 25th of March comes with fear and hope of delight.

This year I made plans. With Max away, touring the world, I planned to meet him in London.

And yes, I should definitely fly out on my birthday.

I won’t be relying on anyone else to wish me a happy birthday. I’ll be making my own happy birthday happiness.

But life doesn’t follow the rules.

Only two weeks, scratch that, 16 days ago, my birth mother died suddenly.

18 months ago, my mum, my real mum, just died after a long and horrible decline.

My birth mother didn’t always send cards. In fact, she only ever sent me one. But that’s ok. Really really. She did send me a pm on fb for the last nine years. I didn’t know just how much I looked forward to that message.

My Mum, knew everyone’s birthday. And only once, missed saying happy birthday to me….

Today I packed my last minute things and called my Dad to check everything was good for him to drop me off to the airport.

He didn’t say it.

No Happy Birthday from Dad.

There isn’t an unkind bone in my Dad’s body and he would never never knowingly hurt me.

But when I reminded him it was my birthday, I could feel his pain. Pain that he’d forgotten.

Pain that it might hurt me.

Pain that he ‘got it wrong’. His words, not mine.

And yet, the tears came.

They usually do.

My birthday has often been a day of tears. D

Even as I write this, my eyes begin to mist over again.

I didn’t think it would be so emotional.

I miss my Mum.

And the tears flow…..

I miss the idea of my birth mother wishing me happy birthday.

As those of you, dear friends and readers know, the idea, the wishes and dreams were all I really had. Hence, I miss the idea. Knowing now that I won’t receive another message from her on fb…. hurts…maybe more than it should. But who decides on the ‘shoulds’.

I miss that I won’t ever get another card from Mum that said almost the same words every year

To our Dear daughter.

We are very proud of you.

Happy Birthday

Love from Mum and Dad

Did you know Mum’s writing?

The D in that Victorian Cursive style. I can see it so clearly. I could forge her writing almost perfectly.

(A useful skill in year 8 when record books had to be signed or detentions were handed out)

I miss Mum’s writing.

I can’t picture my birth mother’s writing. I guess I have that card somewhere.

I hope I have it somewhere.

I wish I have it somewhere.

Hopes and wishes…. but real tears.

Months have passed by since I drafted this and I feel it’s time to revisit and continue….

She is not feeling very brave again…. oh dear. Perhaps I was being ironic when I named my page rather than hopeful. Either way, the feelings are true.

And part of the plan of writing was to simply have a place to honour the truth of the feelings.

My eldest son turned 20 last weekend.

He spent time with me. What a joy and privilege it is to enjoy his company. For him to even ask my advice, just a couple of days afterwards.

And now it’s the second half of the year is coming and it’s going to be Mum’s birthday soon. The second one she’s spent in heaven or glory or elsewhere….she’s not here to make a fuss of or to tell us how much she definitely doesn’t want a fuss made of her, while thoroughly enjoying said fuss being made of her. I miss her

My dad misses her more. They were a double act. Jenn & Trev or Trev & Jenn. It didn’t matter. It would have been their 60th wedding anniversary this year. They made it to 58.

So as we face the pain of losses and gear up to do our best to be brave through each of the moments, know that you’re not alone, my friend. As reading and writing help me make sense of the words jumbled in my head, I hope they bring a little peace and maybe a dash of clarity to you too.

Much love,



Author: sheisstillbrave

I’m Sarah, and just like you, I’ve had to be brave. So here we go. My stories, my journey, my laughter and my tears might all rate a mention. But most of all, if I look in the mirror, I want to remind her, She is still Brave!

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