Letters To My Children

Dexter, Now you are 4

July 12, 2017

Dear Dexter,

Last month you turned four years old. I think this has been the first year you’ve really understood that you were getting a bit older, or bigger, as you put it.

We spent the day before your birthday at Wicksteed Park in Kettering. You and Daddy had wrist bands and went on all of the rides. Mummy was still pregnant and was very heavy so I let you both enjoy everything while I followed you around with Paisley.
You had such a good day! You went on the log flumes and rollercoasters and racing cars and all sorts. You even went on a pedal boat while Paisley and I watched and sat with the ducks. You absolutely loved it, we barely said no to you all day.
We had a lovely picnic by the car and Paisley had a run around on the massive field to stretch her legs. Then you, Daddy and Pais played frisbee too.

On your birthday you ripped open some new lego and wanted to build it straight away! Nanny bought you a skateboard… Maybe you’ll master that this summer. Drinda and Tiffany got you a brilliant kite, and quite a few people gave you money with you’ve just used to buy yourself an awesome scalextric. All the family came round for a birthday tea and you had such a great day. You certainly went to bed a happy boy.

But before your actual birthday, you’ve had a pretty hard year for a 3 year old.
It was just after your 3rd birthday that you had your first epileptic fit. You had a few more before they actually diagnosed it but we knew. We knew what it was before you were even in the ambulance after your first one. I hate that you have been through that. I remember one particular fit that you had and it was almost as if you knew it was coming. It sounded like you were trying to make a noise and you looked straight at me. I’d never been more scared in all my life. It was different to you other fits and the look in your eyes, I could see you were scared too. In that split second, I thought you were going to die.

You’re on medication for it, which sometimes you mess about with, but it seems to be working for now and after so many fits to start with, you now haven’t had one since November. If you continue to stay seizure free for 2 years, your doctor says we can start to reduce your meds. We had to build it up slowly to start with but we have the doseage where it needs to be for now. I’m just hoping we’ve seen the end of it now though.

This last year has also seen your first sister, Paisley become active and mobile. On your 3rd birthday, she’d only just about learnt to roll over and now here she is, walking, running, walking backwards, spinning, going up and down slides and all sorts. While this is great for her, it does mean I’ve had to split my time between you more. No longer can I put her down somewhere and find her still where I left her. It means I cant just set her up with some toys while I spent some one to one time with you. That normally has to wait until her nap time and then I still have housework and things to do that I can only do when she’s not under my feet.

Then we were expecting another baby so Mummy got very tired and was worn out and poorly for a while. You were good in understanding. You saw me cry way more than you should’ve done but you were the sweetest little man. “Don’t worry Mummy, I’ll look after you” you’d tell me. And you did. So well.

But now you have another sister to contend with. Before Bridget came along, I could even leave Paisley in the living room while I washed up or something but I can’t even do that. I can’t leave Bridget alone with Paisley as Paisley loves to grab her. She loves her so much she just wants to hold her all the time and if left unsupervised, she could really hurt her so that means you get pushed to the side even more while I’m either feeding or supervising the girls. I’m sorry about that my little man. It wont be forever. It’s only while Didge is so defenceless and while Paisley isn’t quite at the level of understanding how heavy handed she is.

Just to make the year even harder for you, you will be starting school soon. You understand that you won’t be going to preschool any more and you wont see your teachers that you’ve come to know and love and that you’ll be going to big school but you don’t really know whats involved and I think you are perhaps a little bit anxious.
Maybe you’re not, maybe I’m being a bit protective of you and looking for things that aren’t there but either way, starting school is a big thing and I want to try and make it easy for you.

But it’s not all been a bad or difficult year. We’ve had some fun too! We had a great time at the Peterborough Heritage Festival, We had pet caterpillars that turned into pet butterflies that we then released. We’ve had picnics and days out and been on boats at Ferry Meadows. We’ve been fruit picking , we’ve made play dough, we’ve made eggy heads and sooo much more. And you’ve learnt and grown so much too.

I hope we can have a fantastic summer. It’s almost the end of the school year so we’ll have plenty of time to go places and do things. You won’t have preschool to go to, I’m on maternity leave so wont have to go to work, your cousins will be off school too and there are so many events and things on over the summer holidays, I’m sure we will have so much fun. I can’t wait.

Then after that, you will be starting school. I’m so excited to see how that changes you. I have no doubt you will do incredibly well and enjoy it so much. I can’t wait to see how much you learn and develop with the help of your new teachers.

You know, you drive me crazy at times with your cheekiness and answering back and generally being a child but I’m so glad you’re mine!

Love you, my favourite boy!

Love, Mummy

x

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