I try to hold on to the last moments of her childhood with intense awareness that soon its going to be gone for ever. Few weeks ago my daughter came from school and sat next to me on the sofa.. after talking a little bit about our day, she settled herself under my arm like a little child. A few moments later she was sleeping. I don’t remember the last time she took a nap in my arms, so the first thought was she might be getting a cold. With a worried hand I checked her forehead, but it was normal temperature. I listened to her heart beat, and a slow, steady breath and I soak it all up. The warm feeling of peace and content. Motherhood is a gift, and every birthday, I thank her.. For coming to the world – to me. For sharing her wonderfulness.. her wit and sense of humor.. her growing spirituality.. her wonder and wisdom.. For moments of deep peace and connection and for childhood that is passing in a heartbeat. I love you Apolonia – Happy Thirteenth Birthday.