Today, my family celebrated my birthday with me.
My dad sat at the head of the table, looking thin, tired, but happy.
The cake said "Happy Birthday Cinderella."
So sentimental, a name from childhood,
a name he called me when I was a little girl.
In a month of difficult days for all of us, this day was...beautiful.
And now I sit alone in the candlelight, in the quiet, and for this moment, I am completely at peace, surrounded by the warmth, the laughter, the enormous love they all left here for me, wrapped up like a birthday present, mine for always.
And I am so grateful.