I can’t believe my baby is two years old. TWO. There are days where I still have to remind myself that I’m a parent, let alone to a two year old. Moments when I wake up to silence and lay there, forgetting for the briefest of moments that you’re there. And then I hear you, every morning, like clockwork. ‘Mummy, where ARE you?!’ over and over until I open the door to your room and the day begins.
Two years of waking up to you. Two years of checking on you as I go to bed. Two years of thinking, eating, breathing and sleeping parenthood. Of being mum. Of knowing you.
When I wrote to you last year, it was all about firsts. About seeing you turn over, crawl, walk. This year it’s been all about getting to know you. Getting to see your personality develop. Hearing you go from babbling to speaking sentences. Watching you interact with others and the rest of the world. Learning who you are, and learning who I am in the process.
The best bit of this year has been hearing your voice. You went from chatting nonsense to having an impressive vocabulary in what felt like seconds. Listening to you sing the alphabet song as you play or boss the dog around when you think I can’t hear you is one of my favourite things to do. Every night when I put you to bed, I sit outside your door just to hear you say goodnight to everything in your room; every stuffed animal you insist on sleeping with, the cot, the light, the window. Anything to delay going to sleep, hey?
As I write this, you’re playing in the garden; the early birthday present of your sandpit has proven to be a hit, with every toy that you own taking a turn being coated in sand. Full of cold once againYou’re sneaking in and out of the house, bringing sand in with you despite me asking you not to. Every so often, I catch you giving me a sideways glance, checking to see if I’m going to tell you off before giving me a cheeky grin when I don’t. You’re constantly one for pushing your boundaries with what you can and can’t get away with. Recently those little sulks have set in; the pout, the head down, the going and hiding away. I know I shouldn’t laugh but it’s so funny to watch. Until you start the screaming fits which have started to sneak in at nap time or in the car.
Despite that, I could never complain. You’re quick to apologise for things, something that both melts and breaks my heart. You’ll trip over and apologise to me. You’ll drop something and say sorry. I’ve tried over and over to tell you that it’s okay, you don’t need to apologise but it’s yet to sink in. Sometimes I think it’s part of your personality. As outgoing as you are, it can hide a timidity that’s there. You’re a big boy but still so little in so many ways. When we’re with friends or in groups, you’ll often hang back slightly as if to scope it all out; play dates, classes, soft plays… you’re desperate for others to play with you but it takes a while for you to pluck up courage to jump straight in. That’s okay though, I know it’ll come. And if it doesn’t, that’s also okay with me. Your parents aren’t the most outgoing and we turned out alright. The important thing is you’re kind and gentle and compassionate. Most of the time.
Which is important because you’re about to be a big brother. And as nervous as I am about what these changes mean for you, and for us, I know that it’ll be the making of you. You won’t be the baby anymore, but you’ll always be my baby. The one who made me mum. This little person in their own right, who’ll determinedly swipe his hair out of his eyes, because it’s always in your eyes and will tell me in no uncertain terms what’s about to happen.
Tonight, I’ll be sneaking in to check on a two year old. I’ll place a hand on your back as you sleep, brush your hair behind your ear and take a little moment. Because whilst you might be ready to grow up so quickly, I’m not so keen on how fast it seems to be going.
Happy Birthday my little bean.