Monday, 4 January 2016

Bittersweet Birthdays

Today my beautiful baby boy turned three. He is the youngest of my two. And most probably the last member of our little family. Time is ticking. And I doubt very much a third is on the horizon for us. Last night? I had a little cry. Not a manic, screaming, throwing things kinda cry. A silent tears dripping off my cheeks whilst I wrapped presents and my husband looked on terrified, kinda cry. With every birthday that passes I find that each is bittersweet.

I spent the first year of my son's life willing him to sit up (so he could watch Peppa, I could wash up and look after his troublesome toddler sister), willing him to eat proper food (so the two of them could be fed at the same time) and willing him to walk (shopping, a toddler and a baby is IMPOSSIBLE to get from the car to the house in one go in the pouring rain). I wanted time to pass quickly, to hurry up, to get a move on. Now? I just want it to stop.

At two you can still squeeze your child into a babygro. You can shout "have you got the baby bag?" to your other half as you run out of the door to softplay. Two year olds still have a nap, with rose bud lips and a sweaty bed head. They scream when you leave the room with fear of you being gone forever. Three year olds? They wear 'big boy' Spiderman pyjamas, naps are ten minutes in the car which for some reason makes them horrific human beings and when you leave the room? They are more than likely going to draw on the furniture or punch the dog.

Three year olds start pre-school. Three year olds are very close to four year olds. And four year olds? Go to school. Like actual school where they learn to read and write n s*it. Whilst wrapping presents I had visions of his little legs in school shorts. Him being in nativities and not next to my side wanting a cuddle at all times. It's just zooming by so fast. "SOON HE WILL BE GETTING MARRIED!" I wept to my bemused other half while he tried to work out how to wrap a Thor hammer*.

I went to bed early (OK I was being a tad dramatic) but I wonder when will birthdays become celebrations? At what point will I let go of the baby years and start to think of a future without pull ups, sippy cups, tantrums and tears? Will I still be wrapping presents and weeping when they turn 18? Or at some point do we just get on with it and accept the inevitable? For now I will stare at his baby photos with a gulp in my throat and make sure that the next 18 months I soak up every minute of every day with my boy. Well bar the bits where he is mad and screaming about having chocolate for his tea. Those bits I will gloss over with lovely smiling images in my mind.

*Thor Hammers is a ridiculous present for a three year old. Don't say I didn't warn you.

You can stay with me right here forever (bar the bits when you go mad)


  1. I know how you feel. My 2nd, and also last, turned 3 on 1St December, AND he starts 1/2 days at the Nursery at my Daughters school, on Thursday. I was on such a downer during the run up to his birthday. Reminiscing about the previous 3 years of his life :,-( I still do remember same when my daughter, who's now 6.5, has a birthday :,-(

  2. Aww! Bless you! It does get easier for a few years at least. Then they hit their teen years. I cried when my girl turned 13 last
    I hope he's had a wonderful day x

  3. Happy Birthday E! I will be exactly the same when T turns 3 in May. I am right there with you! x

  4. It's a struggle - every stage is great but bittersweet too. Hope he had a lovely birthday, and that his mama cuddles don't go away any time soon x

  5. Happy birthday to your sweet boy!

    My daughter's 2nd birthday is April and I'm already dreading it.

    Cliche as fook... but it does go way too quickly, doesn't it?

    Jenna at Tinyfootsteps xx

  6. Such a sweet, sad post. I think we all feel a little bit sad about our kids growing up. I can't believe my baby will be 10 in a couple of months. In my mind, she is still tiny. I always do maths which scares me like: 'Oh my God, he's 14. In another 14 years he will be 28!'. How is that even possible?!


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