Where has this summer gone? I’ve spent the evening ironing unicorn name labels into a hundred pieces of school uniform. How is it time for you to go to big school already?! I didn’t want to be the mum who sobs in the playground as you run off to your new class but considering I cried on your induction day, I’m not holding out much hope for a flood-free school run.
It seems only a few weeks ago you were placed into my arms; a tiny, curious little thing. Those four years have passed in the blink of an eye. You changed all of our lives in more wonderful ways than we could ever have imagined. You made us a family of three and filled a space in everyone’s heart that no one even knew existed. You were wonderful, always so headstrong and full of conversation. You were a baby for what seems like five minutes and now here I am preparing to say goodbye to you for five days a week for the next thirteen years. The worry that has been stored quietly at the back of my mind is rearing its head as the time draws near. Will you be okay? Will you eat your dinner without me there to help you? Will you listen to your teachers? Will you miss me? Will you remember to go to the toilet in good time instead of dancing around until the very last second? Will you have friends to play with? Will the children be nice to you? Will you entertain everyone with your crazy ways like you do at home, or will you be overwhelmed by the change?
You are so excited to start reception – you have been counting down the days and you tell everyone who will listen. I know you are so ready for this but I can’t say the thought that you’ll never be wholly ours again hurts a little. I know you need to go to learn and flourish and explore. I know you’ll have the best time but I’d love to hold on to you just a little longer. I asked you what you’re going to be when you grow up and you told me you already have a job at mammy’s work and of course you’re going to help make necklaces when you’re older. I can’t wait until you can!
You’ve grown and flourished massively over the summer. I wonder if it’s because I’ve had the luxury of spending the entire summer with you that I’ve noticed you change before my very eyes. You are so confident and know exactly what you do or do not want. You make up your mind and that’s it, there is no stopping you. You have pushed my buttons in more ways that you could ever imagine and you have tested my parenting skills immensely, but when I see you singing to your baby brother or playing some wonderful adventure with your ponies or practising your super sassy cheerleading moves you fill me with more pride and admiration than you could ever imagine. Tonight you fell asleep on the sofa with your daddy and I spotted my rosy cheeked, beautiful baby girl again. I scooped you up and cuddled you tightly to carry you to bed and pretended you were tiny again, despite your super long legs dangling everywhere.
I think you know there is a big change ahead. You cling to my leg as I load the dishwasher and tell me how much you love me. I wish I could capture those moments and keep them forever. I would revisit it when you no longer want me to tickle your arm as you fall asleep or cuddle you when you fall and graze your knees. I will cherish these moments always. You told me not to be sad that you’re a big girl because you have to turn into a grown up so you can help me bathe Woody and make me cups of tea. You are such a thoughtful little thing.
But although my heart is heavy, I am so excited for the adventure that awaits you. I know you will take the world by storm, grabbing everything that comes your way with both hands. Thank you for being you and for helping me grow in more ways than I ever thought were possible, I can’t wait to share you with the world. I hope they’re ready for you!
P.S. sorry about the playground tears, you’ll understand when you’re a crazy mama, too.