My main reason for starting this blog a few months ago was to try to document this crazy journey through motherhood; I feel like we are constantly moving from one stage to the next without having time to remember or stop and take it all in. It’s a cliche but I honestly can’t believe how fast the last 5 and a bit years have flown by! So this blog is dedicated to our little pocket rocket nutjob on her 5th birthday; an attempt to capture this moment in time and do the impossible of summarising our crazy Esme-Doodle using words!
You entered this world in a whirlwind of madness! My labour with you lasted 90 minutes from start to finish and was so fast that I had no time for any drugs… I’m still holding a bit of a grudge if I’m honest! You were born with your waters still in tact which is supposed to bring good luck and your first year was serene! At least I think it was… your big brother was a pretty mental 18 month old when you arrived and you were basically left to watch the world go by from your bouncy chair while I tried to keep him entertained and stop him licking plug sockets! You were content and settled; George was your favourite thing in the world and you saved your best giggles for him! You had a huge, round, pudding, moon face with massive blue eyes the size of saucers- looking back on photos, you’ve definitely grown into your head!
It was just after your first birthday that you developed your ‘edge!’ The calm and sedate baby girl became replaced with a character that had opinions of her own and was not afraid to let us know them! You didn’t really have any words at 18 months… we were just starting to worry when you basically started speaking in full sentences! When the Health Visitor came to do your 2 year check she asked me if you could put 2 or 3 words together to make a sentence. At that point you said to her ‘George got a bike and daddy got a bike but I not got a bike. I get a yellow bike for my birthday in October!’ She ticked that particular box!
You are always a few steps ahead of the game! As a baby you met all the milestones that your big brother had at very similar times, however instead of doing them hesitantly and or with a wobble, you took to things as if you’d been doing them all your short life! It always felt like you’d been sat studying, taking it all in before applying your new found knowledge and showing us what you could do. I don’t remember you taking a wobbly first step, it was more of a casual saunter across the room! One day you announced that you would write your own name in a birthday card for Daddy and you just could without anyone having shown you how!
You crack me up daily! You have phrases and words that are hilarious when they come from the mouth of a little girl- telling Auntie Bec Bec that ‘you are afraid’ she can’t have a bun or telling me ‘it was worth a try’ having a new friend round for tea as you’d had a lovely time. Sitting next to you on a plane to Ibiza was the best possible cure for my fear of flying- you were absolutely hilarious from setting foot in the airport to getting there!! You can be incredibly empathetic and kind with your words. You understand when people are upset or hurt and try to cheer them up- usually using your own unique brand of slapstick comedy! Just after I had Ted, we went to a black tie events that I was dreading as I couldn’t fit my post baby flab and breastfeeding boobs into anything vaguely flattering- I came downstairs close to tears and completely unprompted you told me I looked ‘Fabulous!’ You are not a cuddler! When anyone tells you they love you, you simply stare back at them as if to say ‘of course you do- why wouldn’t you!?’ If anything though, this means the times you snuggle under my arm on the sofa or give us a big hug are more special!
You are incredibly hot headed! For a child who is so beautifully eloquent, you often adopt a ‘gouge first, ask questions later’ approach with your big brother. You hate not getting your own way and can tantrum up a storm at the flick of a switch. You are exceptionally stubborn; a trait I uphold you get from your daddy! The two of you are either the best of friends or locking horns in the ongoing battle for stubborn supremacy! You are the Jedi master of mind tricks and negotiation. We have just blown the candles out on your birthday cake no less than 23 times! Each time we had to sing and each time we had to do it ‘just one more time’! You have a way of twisting us all around your will and if anyone asked me who was in charge in our house I would probably have to admit it was you!
You generally take things in your stride with more confidence than your big brother but recently you have had a few wobbles. When you are worried or unhappy about things, it comes out in tantrums and difficult behaviour and you definitely push our buttons quite a bit at the moment! You have a tendency to either throw yourself to the ground and scream or go ‘catatonic’ and refuse to speak at all- both are equally infuriating! It is at this point I am supposed to say I wouldn’t change you for the world but if I’m honest these tantrums are pretty exhausting and I won’t be sad to see the back of them! You are a much more complex character than your brothers- as a general rule, if they are fed and have something to do, they are happy (or at least easy to distract!)! Your happiness depends on a much more complex criterion matrix and if the wind is blowing in the wrong direction or we have the audacity to ask you to wear a coat in the winter when you don’t want to, brace yourself!!
You are creative! You love to make and draw and paint but you also have a brilliant imagination for role play games and making up scenarios. I have no idea what direction life will take you in- I don’t know which side of your slightly bi polar personality will win out! I feel quite strongly that you will either be the CEO of a FTSE 100 company or alternatively wear clothes made out of hemp and sell homemade organic lavender soap and braid peoples hair at festivals! My gut feeling is that there is no ‘grey’ or ‘middle ground’ with you; your an all or nothing kind of girl!!
You have your own unique style! Dressing doodle used to be the biggest flash point in our day but I’ve made my peace with your crazy combinations and whacky clothing choices. You look ridiculous approximately 80% of the time but you are happy and I am happier if we haven’t started the day with a battle! I know now the way to get you to wear a coat is to agree that you don’t have to wear one to begin with but to put it in the bottom of the pram and let you work out that it is bloody freezing for yourself! You will come and get it eventually (I still uphold that you are acclimatised to the cold thanks to your time in the freezer as an embryo!) I will continue to document the most ridiculous outfits with photos and look forward to showing you in years to come!
You are just under a year off starting school and are so so ready for it! You need challenge and are primed for learning! You’ll have spent 2 years taking ‘Georgy’ to school and have made yourself at home from the first week- taking off your coat and settling down to whatever activity the big kids were doing. I have no worries about you and school like i did with your brother (although experience has surprised me once, he was absolutely fine and is thriving, so who knows!)
5th birthday edit…
Another year on and you are equally as bonkers! It does feel like you’ve calmed a little; a half term into school and you seem to have started to realise that the rest of us are not here exclusively to serve your will and every need! Last week when I asked you what you wanted to wear, you said you didn’t mind and I could choose- I couldn’t help but think it was some kind of trap! Your clothing choices have been tempered with school uniform and you are more aware of things that match; the old adage of ‘enjoy it while you can’ rings true here as I sort of miss your wild and whacky combos!
You have taken to school like a duck to water! You skipped in on your first day with little more than a backwards glance and have made yourself comfortable ever since! You come home each night with tales of who you have played with and what you have learnt! Your hair is never the same when you come home as when I drop you off- apparently Y6 girls ‘restyle’ you at lunchtime! You match your brother with your ability in maths but I suspect you will be a really good all rounder!! Reading is already starting to come to you and you are brilliant at drawing and making. Someone said to me last week that you were ‘a very special little girl’… I’d have to agree!! You make people laugh, you are kind and read people well, you are sporty and confident!
My darling you are mad as a box of frogs! I joke on many occasions that after 15 years of teaching, you will be the child who breaks me (and when I say joke, it’s firmly grounded in truth!!) many parents would describe their children as crackers, but not many would use the phrase ‘legend’ to describe a 4 year old!! When I found out I was pregnant with Ted, my sister said she couldn’t think of a better child to be a middle one; no one ignores doodles! I have no doubt that you will grow up to change the world; we just need to weather the storm until you get there!!