Dear my Sam,
Well my sweet one, in a few days time you will turn four and even though in some ways time has flown, I feel like I have known you longer. Actually, I can’t remember what it felt like not to have you in my world. You have a pureness of heart that astounds me and an innocence which I hope never completely leaves you.
Everyone who meets you falls in love with you and I nod silently as I watch and feel that burst of pride and think; “Wow, he’s mine.” We have not had the easiest of roads and yet, because of that I never miss a single thing you do.I know you darling and every new thing you accomplish or discover fills me with just as much joy and wonder.
There are many parents that write notes or letters like this to their children on the eve of an upcoming birthday, to try and capture the essence of their little one and remember all the little things they were doing at that tender age. I suppose I am also doing that for you of course but, I wanted to write this also, so that when you read this one day, you realise how amazing you are and how proud I am of you, everyday. You are loved and treasured, you always have been and you always will be.
It’s funny really, parents usually want their children to stop growing up so fast, because it’s all moving too quickly for them. They feel as if they are losing their grasp on their baby and with each year brings more independence and another step in the opposite direction of needing Mummy and Daddy so much. I have the same wish as all those other parents. I don’t want you to grow too fast but I wish to slow down time for you, not me. I am always excited for your birthdays my darling, its your day, the day of you, my favourite. And yet there is a tiny part of my heart that always whispers “not yet” I try to quiet it and my mind echoes; “Don’t bestow a number on my little boy, before he has quite reached it. Let him be sheltered by three for a little longer.”
When you look back on this one day, please don’t ever think I ever underestimated you. I am the one person who will never do that, you surprise and delight me everyday. Just think of it more in terms of ‘Harry Potter’, (which by the way, will be an old children’s story by then but, still immensely popular I’m sure.) and the patronus, like a protection spell, my protection spell. If I had the power to create one, I’d be your patronus, baby.
I know you will grab being four by the horns and give it a run for its money. I have been telling you that your birthday is coming soon and you know about presents and candles on a cake. I have already taught you your name, age and address, incase you ever need it; should you ever get lost and someone ask you. I know conversing would be difficult for you at the moment and so I wanted to make sure that you had remembered those things. So now, we need to change “My name is Sam and I’m three” (which you say perfectly) to; “I’m four”. I have been telling you that soon you will be four and you said “Bye, bye three!” and it was at that moment it hit me. Yes darling, bye, bye three. You are brave and clever and inspiring and will take on any challenges that come your way, as you always do.
And just so you can look back on the fun and cheeky little boy you were, here’s a few things; you love Paw patrol but, are also partial to a little Sofia the First. You have a musical soul and love all the songs Sofia sings. You love to be cheeky and run and sit in Grandad’s chair when he gets up, giggling away and awaiting his reaction. You are a Daddy’s boy right now, and you could play together all day if you didn’t have to stop to eat. As for that appetite of yours, you are my little snacker, rice cakes, bananas, cookies, and Wotsits, to name just a few. You are incredibly smart and can count to one hundred, you know all your ABC’S, you can spell your name and have started spelling other words now. You know all the months of the year and days of the week and as for your shapes, well, even the octagon and pentagon don’t phase you. You are tender and gentle and love when Mummy and Daddy are with you and every night you pick a book and we read together and after that Mummy tells you her ‘Sammy story’, all about when you were born and then Mummy and Daddy do their best rendition of ‘The Three Little Pigs’ which obviously includes all the voices and the best performance of Big Bad Wolf, courtesy of your Daddy. We have told these two stories to you every night for the last year and they are the ones that calm you and the ones you have to hear before settling down to sleep and we will continue to grant that wish every night darling, if they make you happy.
So, as you head into your new world of being four, we are right here beside you, every step of the way and we can’t wait to see the wonders you show us this year, my love. There will only ever be one you.
One of our favourite books I read you by Nancy Tilman; ‘On the Night You Were Born’, always comes to mind my darling:
On the night you were born
The moon smiled with such wonder
That the stars peaked into see you
And the night wind whispered
“Life will never be the same”
Because there had never been anyone like you…ever in the world.
Happy Birthday my little son, oh and by the way, Mummy and Daddy got you a special present this year, you are going to be a big brother!
I love you