Today you turned 1401 days old. You’re 46 months old. Your fourth birthday is not until 30th August: six measly days before you start Reception. In that same week, some of your classmates could be turning five. So, you’re the youngest in your year. The baby. You’ve had a lot of catching up to do.
You won Star of the Week at nursery this week. I came to the assembly, where you got given a badge and a certificate. I’m filled with pride for every achievement you unlock in life, but I was especially proud because no one else has won it three times in a year, as you have. This week, it was for getting yourself dressed independently, without having to be constantly encouraged. Because I know how your teachers feel with that one!
But, your winning for the third time – especially linked with your independence – has got me thinking how far you have come in the last 12 months.
This very time in 2018, we were still potty training you.
You couldn’t say your own name, let alone form full, comprehensible sentences.
You had no boundaries with other children, because you hadn’t had much experience being around them.
When given a crayon, you would simply scribble: mainly on yourself, for two seconds, then be done with it.
You hated music and me singing to you.
Now, in 2019, you’re toilet trained!
You know your full name, along with the names of lots of friends and teachers. We have conversations now, full of lovely words, inside big sentences.
You know how to play nicely with children – holding hands, rather than jumping all over them. You’ve settled in to friendships beautifully.
You can draw smiley faces and shapes now. You’re even getting super clever with your phonics! ‘Maisie Mountain Mountain’ is your favourite, and you’re developing lots of patience to sit and write.
You now have favourite songs. You like Stormzy and the Spanish dancing frog. I often catch you sitting, singing. And every now and then, you ask to be picked up, so we can dance to the kitchen radio together.
I looked at the older children walking home today and suddenly felt terrified at the thought of you moving up to junior school. To secondary school. Perhaps even to university: my goodness, I have a feeling if you do, it will definitely be away from Birmingham. You already love travelling and exploring new places. Just like your mama. I forever wanted to be away from home when I was a teenager, and into my early twenties. I bet my mother – Nanny – was terrified, too.
I hope that if you’re ever an adult reading this, that you were able to spread your wings. Get that summer job abroad. Get that interrail pass for Europe. Get drunk with strangers on a beach. Catch all of the sunsets, stars and sunrises: all in one night!
The world, Noah, is turning a lot uglier than I ever remember it being. You’ve not known that, yet. But you will. I just hope, my Star of the Week, that you’ll develop the strength and wisdom to deal with all that the world throws at you. You’re doing a hell of a job, so far!
Lots of love, always,