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When it comes to birthdays, I am very much of the Make A Fuss variety. I lap up the attention a birthday brings like a cat slurping at a bowl of cream.

I revel in the limelight of birthday greetings, cheerily sharing the secret of the special day with anyone who cares to listen. I have been known to stop complete strangers in the street, just to let them know it’s my birthday – although now I have a toddler who does that task for me.

In many respects I am still the child I once was. Feverishly anticipating the exciting tinge of the day – even if there was school – and looking forward to cake, cards and maybe even the odd present.

But as I look over the pile of gifts I received for my birthday earlier this week, I have to accept that the child has gone.

Instead, in her place, sits a woman hurtling towards the end of her twenties, who squealed with delight at the foot-massaging slippers and pyjama bottoms bought as a present by the husband.

The shiny new peg holder was opened with whoops of joy as I realised I could finally bin the creation I once fashioned from an old jumper and broken coat hanger.

And when the paper was torn off this little beauty I actually shed tears of pure, unadulterated pleasure…

Just look at her, sitting there in all her perfect spherical beauty. My mother has done me proud…

I cried over a teapot.

And rather than rushing out to buy a new pair of shoes with the generous cheque given to me from Granny from the North (my mother-in-law), I put it straight into our savings account.

Yet another sign of how birthdays have changed.

But when it comes to presents, one thing remains the same. A certain man still has the ability to make me smile. Maybe a hint of my younger self lingers on after all.

It’s official, I’m eleven years old again…



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