171 weeks. Or three years and three months.
I’ve noticed another huge change, literally, in the last week or so.
The toddlers have gone.
The toddlers have left the building.
The boys were getting ready for bed a couple of nights ago — running around in their nighttime pull-ups — and they looked like GIANT babies. But not babies.
It sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Like this transition has passed me by and I haven’t realised — until now — that the babies I brought home from hospital have grown up!
I remember when they lost their newborn looks and turned into chunky, apple-cheeked, babies. Then again, when that phase ended and they turned into stocky, tottering little toddlers.
And now they’ve morphed into little boys.
We are living, cheek by jowel, with them every day but we don’t notice these changes until they’ve happened.
Then all of a sudden, it’s like we’re seeing them with new eyes. One minute they leave the room, and the next, they come in looking like a different person.
I’m not really sure where I’m going with this post to be honest. Albeit that I’m feeling a bit tired and emotional.
There have been so many changes over the last couple of months. Since they started pre-school, in April, they’ve become much more independent, much stronger willed and much more worldly-wise than before.
The nursery that we send them to is incredible — the staff there are fabulous — and they are teaching them so many amazing things. Last week, the topic was ‘Castles and Knights’. They made shields and all Cosmo wanted to talk about was castles and ‘draw-bridges that keep the baddies out’.
Wow. He’s three!
I’m sure I didn’t learn about things like that until I went to primary school.
It makes me so proud to hear them chattering to each other. I love listening to their conversations. Darling little sing-song voices, jabbering away. Both of them as bossy as each other; both trying to be top dog.
Cosmo has got amazing recall — just like his daddy. Tell him something just once and it will be lodged, inside his brain, until the next time he’s asked about it.
He astounds me with his knowledge — and his incredible diction. His grasp on the English language is extraordinary for a three year old.
And Bertie. My little birdy. He’s so sweet and loving.
He makes my heart swell with his aptitude for drawing and anything creative.
His key-worker at nursery was so excited a few weeks ago. I went to pick them up and she couldn’t wait to show me how he’d traced his name so beautifully. She said that his pincer grip is amazing for a little one of his age — a little high but amazing — and went on to say that his level of writing skill is akin to that of a reception class child.
I was so proud and also a bit embarrassed that I didn’t know this already. Annoyed with myself that I am not more aware of these childhood benchmarks.
I don’t ever want to take for granted how far they’ve come.
How far we’ve all come.
If I cast my mind back to when my boy and I were trying to conceive; month after month, unsuccessfully trying so very hard to become parents. Motherhood seemed like an unattainable goal. Like a mirage almost.
I used to dream about my babies — about my children. I would picture them; practical and logical like their daddy, creative and artistic like me.
I would wish for them — with every single fibre of my being — so that my whole body ached and my eyes stung with tears.
And now here they are. Exactly as I wished.
My gorgeous, clever, funny little boys.
I don’t think I’ll ever really feel as though I’m fully awake, ever again, to be honest. It all feels like a beautiful, surreal dream.