Cassie, you came into the world so tiny and so small and I was in awe at the wonder of it all. “Good things come in small packages” was what went through my mind as Dad, Lindy and I watched you lie in your humidity crib, born 6 weeks early at 4lbs 11 ozs. You were tiny but you were strong. It was your sister Lindy’s birthday. You were born on her birthday, that has to be something special. 8 year old Lindy dressed in a surgical gown and mask was happy to share her birthday with her younger sibling.
As I write these words, I looked at my fridge door which is covered in photos of my two girls at all stages of their lives, with their arms around each other, smiling, laughing, and making faces for the camera. Today, my proudest moment is seeing them together, the older sibling once again caring for the younger. Both so very different. But both mates all the same.
As you can see, Cassie is no longer that tiny child. She is tall, and stylish and the years have flown by. But the Cassie trademark smile never changed. Whether it was playing her childhood passion, the sax (which was bigger than her when she started playing it) or the horses she rode on weekends, I have watched her grow. I stood and clapped harder than anyone when she won the Dean’s award at Melbourne Uni, and was humbled when at the age of 16 she comforted me with grilled cheese on toast when my mother passed away. On Mother’s Day she learnt to play a song called “For Mother” and played it for me. And when I was running late from work she would say “Don’t worry mum, I’ve had my snack, had my shower and I’m doing my homework. We can still watch Dawson’s Creek when you get home.” I will always remember our times together with love.
Today on my Cassie’s wedding day, I have tried to share with you some memories of the two of us. The mother/daughter relationship was not always that easy, as we are both different in many ways. The trick is to appreciate their beauty, do your best by them, and let them go as graciously as possible. Daughter’s are like cats. They are only ever on loan.
Cassie, this is probably the last time Dad and I will need to speak on your behalf. From here on you will make your own speeches or you and James will speak for each other and do it well. Dad, Lindy and I taught you to walk, talk read and explore tastes, smells and sounds and to experience the warmth of belonging. Through every stage of your journey we have taught you to trust by trusting you and to love through the experience of being loved. We gave you the roots, but we also gave you the wings, so go out there and rock it.
Go out and start your own adventures, keep some of the old traditions, but take the opportunity to start your own. Everyone here including all your ancestors gone before wish you both all the love and luck in the world.
In my imagination, I see Grandma and Grandpa and YiaYia looking down from wherever they may be and saying “These are our beloved grandchildren in whom we are well pleased”.