Thursday, July 18, 2013

To Talia at Five

Dear Talia,

This past week, you turned five years old. I know I say this with every birthday, but I can't believe it. How can I? Two seconds ago we were bringing you home from the hospital. I blinked and here we are, getting you ready for full-time school in the fall. 

It's been 5 years but we still like pink stripes

 This year for your birthday, you had many opinions. It was fun to plan it with you. You wanted a Ballerina Pool Party, and for your cake you wanted a kid riding a bike down a waterfall.  Where did you come up with that idea? Is it possible you were testing me? I have no idea. But I tried my best to give you what you wanted. 

Thankfully you were okay with a last-minute switch due to lack of inventory at the party store - ballerinas out, princesses in. I'm excited (and a little scared) to see what you come up with next year for your cake!

What are you like at five? You are bright and curious. You are stubborn and mischievous. You love being the big sister in the house and are constantly asking Ruby, "Do you want to play with me, your big sister?" or reassuring her with a hug and an "it's okay, your big sister is here."

Over the past year Grammie has been teaching you to read - you can read the old Grade 1 readers and now you say "I don't need to practice reading, Mom. I already know how to read."

You are a fascinating mix of big girl and little girl. 

Strapped safely in a 5pt harness..... with an iPod and purse.
You told me your favourite birthday gift was a tie - between your iPod touch and your new Our Generation doll. 

You are fiercely independent and want to do more and more for yourself - but still drop into my lap for the occasional cuddle.

You are maintaining half an inch in height over your little brother. I fear each month that this will be the month where Declan will take off in a growth spurt and you'll finally understand what I mean when I tell you that just because you'll always be the oldest, that doesn't mean you'll always be the biggest. You've been working hard with your physiotherapy over the last 5 years and we've almost closed the gap. You are getting braver on your bike and in the pool. The other day you swam all around in the pool with me, no lifejacket, face in the water! Once you make up your mind to do something, look out world.

I can't believe you're going to full-time school in the fall. I know you're excited and I know you're ready. I'm excited for you to start your journey of learning and fun activities. It blows my mind that by this time next year, you'll be well on your way to being fluent in another language. But still, I wish time would slow down just a bit. Five years is NOT long enough for me to have you home. I'm proud of you and know you'll do great. But I'm a selfish Mama and don't want to share you with the world so much quite yet.

But share you I will. With Maternelle, and gymnastics, and Sparks, and swimming lessons, and piano lessons..... the list goes on and on. I hope you'll always be excited to try new things and have fun with friends. But mostly I hope we'll always have days like this, just you and me.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Summer 2013

So. It's summer time. Summer! When we throw schedules out the window. When we concentrate on having fun with our babies. When we take great joy in hustling out the door early in the morning to pack as much fun as we can into the day. When we even occasionally shrug our shoulders and say "Meh. They don't need supper, they had a lot of ice cream this afternoon."

But this year is different. Sure, we're still having lots of fun. Sure, we are crossing things off our summer bucket list. But this year we're fitting fun days in around a schedule that looks like this:

Thursday 8am - Declan to Children's Hospital - lump check

Monday 2pm - Declan to Variety Children's Heart Centre - echocardiogram

Wednesday 11am - Declan to Naturopath

Monday 9am - Declan to Dr. Lee - sores on head

Thursday 4pm - Declan to Children's Hospital - lump check

And so on, and so on. With a liberal sprinkling of Emergency Room visits, bloodwork, x-rays, etc. Right now we are anxiously waiting to hear when Declan's biopsy will be.

What? Biopsy? How did this become our life?

This boy - MY boy - is sick. Really sick.

He's had more days like this than we'd like. He has some mysterious lumps that have multiplied and grown. He has random fevers and swelling. He suddenly has an enlarged heart and murmur. He has days where he is a sad little lump who sleeps all day and all night. We don't know what's up. There are many theories floating around right now - maybe a virus. Maybe tuberculosis. Maybe even cancer, although nobody wants to say it. Personally, I'm praying for a virus. Ha. When do you hope your kid has a virus? When the alternative is too scary to comprehend, that's when.

So we keep on going. We have fun when we can and we go to the hospital when we need to. We are tired and we are terrified. And hopefully we will look back on Summer 2013 as the summer that our little buggar Declan gave us the scare of a lifetime due to a strange virus that ended up being no big deal. Fingers crossed, everyone.