You’re four now. And I can’t comprehend. Where those years went. How quickly you grew from a baby into a gorgeous, too-smart-for-his-own-good little boy. Okay. Practically a big boy. But thankfully, still not old enough for chewing gum. (Seriously – this has to be one of a mother’s top hazardous fears, right?)
You had an amazing time at your birthday party – the gladiator water slide and the jumping castle are two of your favourite pastimes – and having both in the same space was pretty much your idea of heaven. Despite being sick (tonsillitis, yet again) you enjoyed the heck out of your party. The tattoo suckers were a massive treat. In fact – had we bought nothing else but a few boxes of tattoo suckers, I don’t think any of the kids would have minded. I spent about 24 straight hours in the kitchen – baking, cooking, preparing, grating, cutting and generally enjoying myself. (It’s true. My favourite part about your birthday parties is the preparation of the food.) And your dad and I always seriously over-cater in terms of everything – although this year we were better than previous years.
The weather was amazingly hot. As it always is. You adored having people sing happy birthday to you, and relished blowing out the candles on your Hulk cake, that your Granny ordered for you. You stuffed your face with cupcakes and kept up the tradition of eating the head of whatever your cake was that year as you devoured Hulk’s head.
You had an even better time once everyone had gone home, and it was just you and Jackson – and the run of Dave’s house. You bathed, jumped on the bed, (am also a bit mortified to report: may have poohed on Jackson’s bed) ran around, played games, and generally exhausted each other out, to fall asleep 5 minutes into Rebecca telling you two a bedtime story. After 10pm that evening.
You cried when I picked you up out of Jackson’s bed and you woke up and realised I was taking you home. And you cried for Jackson all the way home too. I have a feeling that you two will be friends for life. It will be good for you. Just don’t get him into too much trouble, please!
Over four years I’ve watched you develop into your own, independent-as-far-as-possible person. You love to shower by yourself, dress yourself and more than anything else in the world – you love Ben 10, superheroes (both marvel and DC), Lego, terrorizing the cats and strawberries. You love taking pictures of yourself and posing in the mirror.
And even though I’m sick to death of picking up a squillion Lego pieces and am beyond bored of Ben and his cheesy one-liners, for you I will haul out that monster box of blocks and build cities and robots and suffer through yet another episode of Ben and Gwen.
You love reading your daddy’s big encyclopedia on comic book heroes and baddies. You adore the big book on Hulk and your pop-up books on monsters and Dracula, even though you’re still a bit too little to be able to restrain from yanking out some of the pop-up creatures.
You think farting and toilet jokes are hilarious and you’re always proud of your poos. And I’m not ashamed of the fact that I think the fact that you think fart jokes are hilarious – is kinda awesome. Because it’s so easy to make you laugh.
You have a magnificent laugh. Boy-ish and care-free. And a wicked cackle when the something you’re laughing at is particularly naughty or disgusting. You’re a total boy, and I must say I sort of revel in that. I’m not very girly, or soft – and I love how rough and tough you are.
The one thing that does make me soft and completely melt my heart is how much of a mommy’s boy you are. Much like your daddy. And that, my son, is not a bad thing. You love to kiss and cuddle, you love to snuggle before bed time and you love drawing me pictures. Everything you make at school is made with me in mind – your daddy is a little jealous, I’ll have you know.
You love singing songs and building puzzles and baking with your dad. You love your motorbike and your grandparents. You’re a little shit-stirrer and a heart-breaker and an emotional-manipulator – but you’re mine.
You’re ours. And we’re grateful for it. All of it. All four years of YOU. Ups, downs and rollercoasters. Helplessness, heartache, happiness, overwhelming love and responsibility and reward.
And growth. So much of it. How we’ve all grown in four years. My, my, my….
And love. More than anyone in the whole world, ever. From the moment we laid eyes on you.
Happy birthday, son.