I am sorry that it has been a while since I wrote you a letter. As you would say, Naughty Mummy.
Looking back at all the other letters to you it has actually been a really long time since I wrote you a proper letter. I think that when I come to put fingers to keys there seems so much to capture that I think I will not do it justice and so I stop. Not this time though, I am determined to get something written down. For me as much as for you.
I sat and watched you yesterday afternoon. You were sitting on the sofa, legs raised. Watching Lego Chima on a tablet balanced on your knees. You were eating an apple that I had peeled and cut up (because you are lacking in teeth at the moment). You then ate a second apple. You looked so old all of a sudden. Not me old, but growing up too fast old. I cannot believe you are only five years old. You are all gangly limbs and pointy elbows and knees. You are bruises and dirt. You have lost two front bottom teeth. That shocked me, it seemed far too soon, but sure enough the new ones are coming through already. All trace of the baby and toddler have gone. I look at baby pictures of you and I hardly recognise you.
You are a kind and generous child. You love your sister fiercely. Every day you tell her you are going to marry her, even though as I put you to bed at night you tell me sadly that you know you aren’t really allowed to marry her. If we talk about girls at school you get really cross and shout at us. If I say or do something that you don’t like you hiss at me with your teeth bared like a cat. It is frightening and amazing all at once. You are very aware at the moment of how people see you and get very unhappy if we laugh at you when you don’t think something is funny. (although walking into the wheelie bin WAS funny, sorry). You like dressing up, usually as a Power Ranger or Spiderman.
You love: playing football at break time, football cards (I do not love these at all), playing football in the house with a bouncy flashy ball, being ‘Goaler’, your ‘Goaler’ gloves, Power Rangers, Lego Chima, Lego Star Wars, Hot Wheels cars, writing and drawing, making and wrapping little presents for us, sending letters to people, playing with your sister, Castles and Knights (your topic at school this term), running and climbing, your Dad. You are apparently a Chelsea supporter, much to your Dad’s disgust. Grandad Derek is happy though.
Your Dad has been away again a lot this year and you miss him terribly. You are however very brave about it all and love ‘being Daddy’ when he is away. You look after me so well, and will always give me a hug when I am missing your Dad.
We have spent a lot of time and energy working on getting you to sleep in your own bed by yourself and going to bed nicely in the evenings. We still have some challenges with this but I am so proud of you and how much you have tried to do as we ask. You have always wanted company at night time and would sleep with us every night if you could but we are all much happier and better people after a good nights sleep. You can be stubborn and willful but in life that is no bad thing, I just wish sometimes that you wouldn’t answer me back so much, it makes my blood boil. We all shout a little too much at times, and so you helped me pick a special word that any of us can say when we are shouting and if we hear it we have to stop immediately, hug, and then have a discussion in our normal voice. I think it has made life around these parts a little better. I wonder if you will remember that word if you ever read this letter.
School has had an incredible effect on your shyness and confidence levels. The boy that used to refuse to talk to anyone when I was there is now polite and chatty and engaging. It is a joy to see it. You always get lovely reports from your teachers about how nice you are to your friends and all your teachers and I am so very proud of the little boy you have become (you would say big boy but you are still my little boy for a bit longer I promise).
I love you more than you can ever imagine.