Now I know I said my birthday was over last week, but little did I know at that point that I had inadvertently lied to you.

No, it was far from over.

Monday saw me slaving over a hot computer at the office when my darling Sir showed up unannounced. I greeted him dutifully at the (double-glass) door, introduced him to the boss, and then dissolved in a little grease spot on the floor when Sir stepped back to reveal my darling daughter Madam and her darling husband, my darling son-in-law, Beau, waiting in the lobby.

Truth be told, I dissolved in a flood of tears, much to my new boss’s complete bewilderment.

See, little did he know that Madam and Beau left our fair shores last November to take up residence in Sydney. Little did he know that they had won a trip to Hawaii, and with swift finagling between them and Sir, had orchestrated an extended trip for them to surprise me for my birthday. Surprise? Flabbergasted, more like, gobsmacked certainly. For a moment there I joined the boss in complete bewilderment.

Of course as things pan out, as they do, I was up to my eyeballs in a deadline and could do no more than weep copiously and bid them a heartfelt adieu with a promise I would see them later in the day.

Have you ever tried to do anything vaguely mathematical while viewing the world as if from the bottom of a swimming pool? I can tell you from experience it is an exercise not to be taken lightly.

I sat back down, I suspect with a thump at my desk and tried valiantly to concentrate, only to see Madam’s beautiful face swimming before my eyes, whereupon I would have to reach for more paper towels (tissues being conspicuous in their absence) and thence wipe and blow. Or was it blow and wipe? I confess I’m still somewhat befuddled by it all.

Over the next several days we spent many a happy hour together, and I re-realized what a gorgeous pair of humans they are.

Obviously supremely happy with their decision to move to Australia, they exuded a confidence and vivacity which had grown exponentially since their departure.

Gone was the painfully shy little girl in her school uniform. Gone was the shy and retiring boyfriend. Here were my chicks very definitely all grown up and deliriously happy.

Oh, they’ve had the odd hurdle to overcome, but it became obvious to me that together they would frolic and bound across each one without so much as a moment’s hesitation.

What better a birthday gift could one receive I ask you? To see your greatest pride and joy emerge as the glorious butterflies they are.

Now if I could only show some maturity at my autumnal age and quit having a quiet sob.

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at anniedearkc