Yo Kayla (This is your greeting; sorry, I have borrowed it)
You arrived on the morning of 9 November 1982 and boy did you arrive! A force of nature who almost immediately took control of proceedings. Your two older sisters were certainly no pushovers, but you forced your way into this family as only you can.
I need to clear up a bit of family folklore; I did not take Mum to the Hospital and abandon her there on the night you were born!
It was my duty night on Lifeline, and; as with everything else in your life, you decided you just had to be born at this time and on your terms!
I did go home after dropping Mum to the hospital, it was too late to arrange for anyone to take my shift and I was torn between duty and joy.
I watched the clock religiously, waiting for the little hand to click onto 12 when my shift was due to finish. For the last 15 minutes, I prayed there would not be anyone in need of solace, to prevent me from leaving on time and getting back to the hospital to be with Mum before she went into her final labour.
34 Years ago, there were no mobile phones to enable me to take Lifeline with me, even if this had been allowed.
There is also no truth in the rumor that we actually wanted a boy. I am on record as saying that after having two girls, I really did not want to have to relearn this parenting caper, which would have been the case, if we were to have had a boy.
It didn’t much matter as it turned out; we certainly had to relearn what it was like to have a baby in the house once again, and; what a baby we had to contend with!
My mother said on more than one occasion, you just did not like being a baby. You wanted the world before you could talk or walk!
Baptized as an Anglican with Rob and Marg standing proudly as your god parents, meant we had completed the trifecta of the mix of religions Mum and I had inherited.
You were loved and nurtured as a precious addition to our family. For you, this was nothing less than you deserved, you soaked up the attention and demanded even more.
In the future, you and I would have tests of will that left both of us exhausted, but there was a bond between the two of us, which; despite bending and straining precipitously at times, would bounce back, each time stronger and more durable than before.
In one of the bravest (silliest) things we have ever done, we set off for Bright in the beautiful Ovens Valley for our normal Christmas camping holiday when you were just six weeks’ old.
Your first Christmas was spent in a bouncinette looking critically at other campers as they wandered past on their way to the river.
I remember one night when nothing would settle you, I walked you for what seemed like hours. There were times, I thought I had succeeded in getting you to sleep, but the moment I stopped to check, the screams would restart, to echo through the valley.
There was a fairground on the edge of the village, I headed for this, figuring that at least the noise of the fair, would drown out the tortured yells coming from the pram.
We had not been inside the fair for any more than a minute or two, when I dared to look inside the pram; you were sound asleep, defeated by something even louder than yourself.
I smile as I write this, it is early morning in Hong Kong and you will be preparing for a day at work, consumed by the hustle and bustle of that most vibrant of cities.
You will still be fighting to be heard above the hubbub, not so easily deflected by the noise around you.
We have traveled a long, long way Miss Kayla, but the love has never faltered and I say a silent prayer of thanks for the life and joy you have given us.
Go loud and strong into the future, my darling.
We are so proud of you.