Tuesday, 20 July 2010

He is Ten

Making his birthday cake, telling me to take pictures.

My eldest son is Ten years old. I am still getting my head around it. I used to hate it when we would see friends or people and they would say "Oh my god would you just look at you, my you've grown so much. Sigh, time flies"
Because when you are a kid, it feels like time drags on forever, and you want to hurry up and grow up so you can do stuff.

And then I blinked. And the baby, my guinea pig baby, turned ten. Together, everything is the first time. It still is, and will keep on this way for quite a while longer.

The child who paves the way for his younger siblings. So much that we go through is new, and so I am anxious, nervous, scared, excited about milestones, new adventures, moments where I have no friggin clue what to do or say. Times when he asks me a question and I stare at him, scanning my brain to find the 'right' answer, him looking at me with a look of 'Hello? 2 minutes went by, answer the question you crazy woman with left eye twitching'

I will spare all the details of the birth. Let's just say our wee babe was pulled from my body and I was so relieved he was out. Others in the room were in more a joyous mood then myself, thanks to the drugs, and sleeping tablet I was given 12 hours earlier because 'First time mums take forever' Hmm, guess not! Others may say birth does not matter, so long as there is a healthy baby. To that I say a healthy mother is just as important.

This is me and my baby, our first cuddle, several hours after he was born. I am all puffy and still sick from the drugs. Several others had held my son by this stage. My husband and I were finally alone with our baby and I said to him "Can I have a cuddle now?"
When I look at this picture, the caption that comes to mind is "Here is our baby, how does he work?" In so many ways the hard part had just begun.
Those early days, all blurry and muddled together. Boobs that doubled in size and leaked (no one told me they leaked!), not being able to sit, shuffling around, baby crying for a feed despite being fed 3 hours earlier for a whole hour. Sleep deprived, emotional, ready to kill the next person who told me it was just the 'baby blues'

I wish I could go back, put myself and baby in bed, and say 'Relax, just snuggled in bed with your baby and rest. The cleaners, cooks and helpers will take care of everything."
Instead, through well meaning advice, I would wrap and try to put our helpless baby in his own bed after every feed. Well, after a nappy change and burp., cause you have to whack that babies back until it burps damn it!
Somehow we made it without breaking him. Amongst all the learning and growing our son was absolutely wonderful. I truly understood what it meant to love another person so much that you really would do anything for them. His first word was Mumma, at 3 months. I was mocked by some people when I told them. Apparently he was too young and all babies say Daddy first.
How proud I was when he said it in front of them. My smile could not be bigger seeing the look on their faces, ha!
Our little boy grew up sooo fast. Looking back it was too fast. Doing everything very early, but we were excited to watch these milestones, not really noticing time flying by, and our baby becoming a very independent toddler.
When we felt ready for another child I was so scared. Could I love another baby as much as I loved our son? I didn't think it was possible, and spent many nights awake, scared and worried for our new baby.
Here we are. I am about 6 months pregnant here. He loved resting his head on my belly.
When the baby was born, all the stress and worry I had was gone in a flash. I was in love with our not so little baby boy, and couldn't wait for our eldest to meet his new brother.
When he did he was more interested in seeing me, and the hospital bed and flinging all the curtains.
Over time though he grew very fond of his little brother, and they are still best friends.

Then came along a little sister. Looking back at pictures of him and his baby sister make me laugh. He adored her so much. He would do anything to make her smile and laugh, and entertain her. Nearly 6 years later and wow, can he get angry if she so dares to even look at his things!
Every now and then they share a moment, playing together, or him helping her with reading words she doesn't know and it warms my heart.

The journey I took with my son lead me to the parent I am now. I learnt to follow my heart, my instincts, what I sensed was right. While I look back with a sadness that I did not parent my baby how I have his siblings, I also am grateful that we learnt together that there was a better way, and that it is never too late to block your ears from well meaning advice and listen to your heart and child.

He is by far the child I worry about the most. The child I think too much about in terms of our parenting with him. Wanting to get it 'right' and not stuff up.
By the time we get to the 3rd child and beyond we have learnt what is important and what is not, and the children after that get more relaxed parents. We have been there before you see.
We see a child with a clump of hair missing from their heads and laugh, or a child covered head to toe in Vegemite and grab the camera.

We are trying hard to relax more, and do our best with our guinea pig baby and all that life is throwing at the 3 of us. I am still getting used to receiving emails from my son, but am grateful he wants to send them to me, 99% being toys, lego and games he would like.

For now, I shall embrace the endless talks about bionicles, star wars, Indiana Jones, lego and the myriad of facts he likes to tell over and over about Dinosaurs.

Happy Birthday our son. Try to go slowly, you have all the time in the world.


klynch said...

Happy Birthday!!
so beautiful and handsom!!

shae said...

Wow ten! Talking about firstborns always gets me all emo-until forever they are your first everything! I think it's probably normal to worry a bit...well I know I do.
Much love

RaisingDaisies said...

Aww, I can't even imagine, we'll be hitting that in just over 2 years.. How does it feel having a little in double digits?? I worry about my oldest too....

Love the pictures, hun! Does it make you a bit clucky to see them? LOL!