Thursday 18 February 2016

The First of the Lasts

There is an almost five-year-old living with us.   He’s great.  He likes to talk.  He loves jig saws, PAW Patrol and a bowl of fruit. He is also very partial to a Kinder Joy. 

He likes to sleep.    He usually has a three-hour nap, once maybe twice a week.   Yes, this means he is bright eyed and bushy tailed at proper bedtime and it always means I get into his bed with him until he falls asleep.  Sometimes I wake up in the morning and I’m still there.

I love this.   I love when he opens his eyes in the middle of the night and sees me there.  He smiles, reaches out to pat my cheek before falling back to sleep.  In the morning when he wakes and sees me, he says, “these are the best mornings.”

He was very fond of his cot and resisted the “big bed” for a long time.   The very last of our boys to make that leap and it was the biggest leap.  He wasn’t keen on toilet training either; using every trick in the book to get out of it.  “I’m still too little and I will do it when I am older.  Maybe 6.”  “I don’t need to.  I have my nappies.”

Of course that day did eventually happen and he was so delighted and pleased with himself declaring the bathroom “not so scary after all.”

Another item of baby paraphernalia still knocking around is the buggy.  It doesn’t get used much but gets an outing every now and again all the same.  Truth be told, sometimes the six-and-a-half-year-old will steal a sneaky ride in it.

More recently the small boy commented that he hasn’t been carried in a long time.  This wasn’t strictly true as a day on the trampoline after a long winter saw him wake with sore legs and I helped him downstairs.  By carrying him in my arms.  If he neglects to wear shoes on a school run and it is raining, he will also get a half drag/half carry into the house.

In the morning he tells me he can do it himself when I try to help him with his shoes.  He dresses himself and brushes his own teeth, allowing me to polish them when he is finished.  

He loves to hoover the floors for me and he is in seventh heaven if I fill the sink with soapy water and ask him to wash up.  He likes to take items out of the pinger (microwave to you and me) and is great at putting the proper items in the recycling bin.

Because he was my last baby I was free from the burden of weaning and as far as I was concerned this one could breastfeed until he was four.  Five even.   I placed the decision in his hands.  Turns out I wasn’t prepared for him pushing me away when he was only about 15 months old.   I can’t actually remember feeding him the previous night but that bright sunny day and my boobs with corners will never be forgotten.  He was done and happy to be.  I had to go with that.

He likes Weetabix for his breakfast.  He likes me to feed it to him.   And I do this gladly.  It’s probably the only “baby” thing left that he likes me to do for him.   The day will come when he picks up the spoon and eats his “crunchy” breakfast himself.

He can’t pronounce the letter R.  But he can use words like “extremely” “cautious” “decision” “confused” and “expect.”   He recognises his name written down and knows his numbers.  He can do simple addition.       

He can do lots of things.  And he can’t and/or won’t do others.  And you know what?  I am going with this flow.  

Because you see, all of the above were the first of the lasts.  The last time he slept in a cot.  The last time he used a nappy.  The last time he needed me to do up his shoes. 
When he asks me to help him with his breakfast for the last time, when he learns how to pronounce the letter R and possibly, when he goes to Big School at the end of August in just a short 6 months, it means there are no more babies in this house.

The last of the firsts.  Bitter sweet.   But no stopping them. 


  1. Oh I love this. Going through this with my very new, but very last 4 year old. There is no hurry for all of his firsts are my lasts and as I have learned, and as you did too, from our older children; there really is no need to rush, all in good time.