Today marks the second birthday of our youngest.
Two whole years since a larger than expected baby made a slower than expected entrance into the world.
What can I say about Harry? He is a strong character and has certainly tested me in ways I didn’t think he would – he is the first to show me full on tantrums – the sort you read about and see on TV – the sort I had always assumed were exaggerated for comedic effect. He is strong-willed and forceful in letting you know his opinions!
He won’t ever be left out and will shout me me me, or mine mine mine if he thinks he is missing out on something. There’s not a chance he will be missed out and he knows, oh boy does he know, if the other two have managed to sneak something he hasn’t. He will sob if he thinks he is missing out on time with my parents, or if the other two leave and he doesn’t.
He doesn’t have a huge repertoire of words, but then he doesn’t need them. His siblings, mostly Emma, will answer and interpret for him. What he lacks in language skills he makes up in physicality. He is strong and can hold his own with his older siblings and joins in their games and play; although he does get frustrated that he can’t always keep up with them when they run!
He has developed a real love of reading and it is wonderful when he chooses books out, hands them to me and pulls himself up onto the sofa. Current faves are Miffy, anything that’s noisy and Oh Dear! By Rod Campbell. There truly is nothing I have loved more on my motherhood journey than sitting with my children when they were this age and enjoying the wonder of books and that little moment of excitement as he repeats a word or points out the things he knows. Three children on I still enjoy this special time. I know I’m losing those moments with Daniel and I’m keen to savour them even more with Harry.
Bedtime stories are joyful and he is beginning to choose longer books for us to read and is also starting to remember some of his favourites; remembering which animals are next in the search for eggs, or which vehicle is next in his noisy book.
His imaginary play seems so much more advanced than I recall Daniel and Emma’s being at this age. For a long time now he has included his favourite teddy, Beach Monkey, in his play. Feeding him and sitting him down for picnics. This last week we have had Beach be unwell – having his temperature taken and needing to go to bed for a rest. His play is far more sophisticated than Daniel’s at times and he enjoys being in the midst of their games of cafes andd shops.
He is also much more perceptive than Daniel was or even is now. He gently stroked Emma’s leg this week when she fell asleep in the car and I needed to bring her in, knowing that she needed to wake up and wanting to do so gently. He brings the older two their favourite teddy’s when they’re upset and he really does display a great deal of empathy towards them and other children.
He loves farm animals – pigs being his favourite and he enjoys his farm-based books enormously. We bought him a wooden farmers field last year and he plays with the animals and the tractor regularly. We have added to that this year with a barn and some more animals so I am sure he will continue to enjoy playing with it.
He is a lovely little boy; full of smiles and with an easy going nature. He is a real mix of Daniel’s ability to concentrate from a young age, but has Emma’s more zany and relaxed side; less worried about being within perceived rules and things being just so. Each night he happily goes to bed, clutching Beach Monkey and with a smile on his face. It’s rare for him to wake upset, instead he is happily hiding under his duvet, simply waiting for us to go in and find him.
He truly is a delightful little boy and I can’t wait to how his personality develops over the coming year and how the bond he has with his siblings grows too.
Happy Birthday, Harry!