To my Sophie,
It feels like you will be two years old forever. Each day feels long and full of highs and lows, laughter, amazement and more than one challenge. Each night that you wake and keep us from our beds feels even longer.
And yet, my darling, I know that you will not be two years old for even very much longer at all no matter how long the days seem. For soon you will be three, then four and beyond. Little for long days but such short years.
And so I write this to you, my little love, at the beautiful and challenging age of two, to remember the things I know I will forget by the time I wave you off into your own home one day in the future. Of course I know that you will leave behind the feelings, the love and the laughter ringing in my ears but I also know that these moments, this exact year of your life will be only a blur of happiness, of discovery and of exhaustion.
So here they are my wild-haired girl –
The things I want to remember of you at two years old:
– Your crazy, bedhead hair – slow to arrive, completely and unexplicably untameable and you – completely unaware of the mass of fluff following you through each adventure.
– Your little cheeks, embedded with the most perfect dimples, puffed out in displeasure or thrown back in fits of giddy laughter. And the way you pretend to hate it when I kiss and gobble at them.
– The smell of your skin and the top of your head after bath time.
– The way that only “Mama” will do no matter the activity or moment. It has to be shared with me to the point of obsession. Everyone else calls this the clingy phase – but I know it is the last part of us being as one, tied by the invisible umbilical before the world takes you over. Stay mine a tiny while longer won’t you?
– The way you call me “Mama”
– The way you will stand at the bottom of the stairs and shout with all your might “boys! Dinner’ ready!” and then squeal rapturously as they thunder down the stairs for tea.
– The way you hide your head in your hands and assume that as you cannot see us, we surely cannot see you. Adorable and the best part of your new-found love of hide and seek.
– The way you sing with all your heart, no fear or inhibition, just sing your favourite soundtracks as loud as you can, as often as you can (Moana and Frozen are our top picks right now!). Keep that unbridled enthusiasm for the things you love always.
– The way you sit next to me and rifle through my makeup box whilst I’m putting my makeup on. You love the pink tinted lipbalm the most and often smear if all over your face before seeking approval. You always are beautiful.
– The way you climb up onto the computer chair and announce you are going to do “some very important homework” – so eager to be grown up like your brothers. Always in such a hurry. Slow down my love.
– The way you bounce and bounce on the bed before falling into a heap of giggles. SO much joy and energy. Keep it forever.
– The way you announce you “don’t like” people and then squint to see their reaction. It’s funny and awful in equal measure. Such a stinker already.
– The amazement at watching your first snow fall. We had a big storm they named ‘beast from the east’ this February (2018). Absolutely raptured you ran from window to window shouting to everybody that the snow was here as though magic was falling from the sky. What must you think about it all I wonder?
– The way you repeat and repeat and repeat each phrase and sentence learned and each question asked, learning and rehearsing and practicing until you say it perfectly and more importantly until you get the answer you want.
– The way you astonish people with your vocabulary – people are so often amazed at your full sentences and never ending dialogue.
– The way that you carry around your “dou-dou” toy everywhere no matter how filthy it inevitably gets. You love that thing more than life itself I think.
– The way that when you’re tired you stroke the soft material of dou-dou through your fingers and stare into space. Your Dad did the same thing when he was a little boy too.
– The feeling of your light and energy as you bounce into the house after a long day out – literally transforming rooms with infectious joy.
– The way you climb up and down the three little steps in the swimming baths, over and over again despite there being endless slides and seemingly more interesting or fun things to do at toddler swim. You couldn’t care less, up and down you go, so cautious just like Zak was at that age and then so proud of each step conquered.
– The routines that we have for bedtime and the way you know each and every step of teeth brushing, bath time, milky business, mama cuddles, stories (your favourites currently are The Koala who Could and The Tiger Who Came To Tea) and finally bedtime – correcting me if I try to skip a step or hurry through one. Little do you know I treasure each one too.
So many moments to hold on to, so much laugher, so much to learn – always in such a hurry.
Slow down a little my love, Mama’s not quite ready.