For the most part, it feels like you haven’t changed all that much this year.
It was only a few months ago that I was marveling at how you could be almost four, how ten months could have passed, with no discernible differences from when you were just turned three.
And then all the changes happened at once. In the last two months, you have shot up. Your body has lost all hint of toddler chubbiness, leaving in it’s place the longer, leaner shape of a boy. You’ve suddenly leapt forward with your language and your vocabulary. There are less cutely mispronounced words. More complex descriptions added to your arsenal, and used in the appropriate context. You talk like a child now, not a baby.
The differences between you and your younger brother could not seem more vast at this stage in your respective developments. Although, give it a year or two, and I know you will have met in the middle again.
Sometimes, I worry whether I’m giving you enough of my attention. You are so quiet, so content to watch the world go by and so undemanding of me verbally. You actually remind me a lot of myself as a child, in that respect. Indeed, it is your older brother who takes up a lot of my verbal attention, and your younger brother who takes up a lot of my physical attention. Unfortunately, right now, you are very much the middle child in that respect.
You don’t ask for much at all, apart from your mama cuddles, which I give to you freely as much as I can. Sometimes I wonder if you are truly content in your quiet state – am I doing enough? Should I be giving you more? But when you climb into my lap, wrap my arms around yourself and snuggle down with a sigh, I think I must be doing OK with the balance of attention. Those cuddles are YOUR thing. Yours and mine. And I love that you treasure them so much.
Your brothers show no allegiance, they are happy to go to anyone, and I truly think that they love both parents equally and unequivocally. They crave no special attention or time that only one of us can give. But you, my Rory. You are a total mama’s boy, and I adore that, because it makes me feel special. You crave your cuddles and your time with me, you dislike spending time away from me. When you are at preschool, even though you always have a great time, you always make sure to tell me that you missed me. I know that over time, you will assert your independence. A time will come, sooner or later, when you shrug off a cuddle in favour of something else, so I will enjoy it whilst you ‘need’ me.
It’s such a delicious age, turning four. Old enough to have a real sense of birthday excitement, yet young enough to take our “You are going to be such a big boy!” comments as a literal concept – The morning of your birthday you said “NOW I will be tall enough to reach the doorbell!”
You had your first birthday party with friends this year. You loved every minute of it and had such a blast. Dada and I loved that you were so delighted. You even had a couple of special guests, and could not believe that mama had the phone number for the “standing up paw patrols”. Unfortunately I do not personally know the on four legs Paw Patrols ; )
Happy Birthday, Rory. Now you are four.