My niece is going to celebrate her birthday soon. And although this birthday is obviously not coming as a surprise. I’m now sitting here thinking about an appropriate present, consulting Google for a great idea.

I’m searching for something special which would put a big smile on her face. My niece is turning nine, that’s three years older than my oldest daughter. What would be the biggest wish of a nine-year old girl? Playmobil, jewelry, clothes, lipgloss, barbies…? Why I’m not simply asking her? It’s because she is not able to give me an answer – actually she is not able to speak. My niece is having RETT Syndrom, a serious lifelong neurological disorder that is caused by random gene mutations.

Day in day out this means that she is dependent on a round-the-clock support as she is not able to speak and to walk or eat on her own. Other than my daugther, who loves talking about birthday or christmas wishes, I’ve never heard any wishes from my niece. If I would ask her a very concrete question which can be answered with “yes” or “no” I could get a reply from her via a hand signal or with the help of her computer – given I was choosing the right question!
She really likes action and loves being with other kids of her age who treat her like every other girl – this is what makes her smile. I’ve made a decision now: we’re going to visit a kid’s musical together. And as she likes horses, princesses, glitter and chocolate like every girl I guess I can’t go wrong with a Bibbi and Tina audio book, a sequined T-shirt and chocolate cake!
Happy Birthday – I love you!