Every year I sit here writing these letters and ask myself, where does the time go? How did that little baby who screamed day and night, grow into such a beautiful and gentle soul such as you? And yet here we are, and today you are five.
You’ve looked forward to this day for such a long time now, counting down the months, the weeks and the days, deliberating back and forth the presents you would ask for, all of the things that you would do once you were five. And although you may not have got your very own pet unicorn, nor can you run faster than a cheetah, I admire your imagination, your belief that anything is possible, and the fact that, when you opened your presents this morning and discovered you didn’t have a pet unicorn, you told me, “Perhaps it’s just an invisible one!”.
And that’s you all over Meggy, creating the most wonderful and fanciful daydreams, the lines between your games and reality overlapping and blurring at the seams, living in your own little world of make believe. As that years pass by I hold my breath, waiting for you to question the magical tales we tell, to lose the moments where your eyes grow wide and your mouth falls open, waiting for a little scepticism to creep in. And even when Eva rolls her eyes and tells you, “It’s not real Meggy!”, or Harry laughs and says, “It’s only pretend!”, your conviction never falters. And I absolutely love that.
Sometimes it can be difficult for you when your imagination runs away with itself. Like last month, when you sobbed for hours at bedtime, so afraid that one day you would be one hundred. “But I’ll be so big I won’t fit in a house anymore!” you sobbed, “I’ll have nobody to look after me and it will be cold outside!”. And as I soothed your tears, and assured you that whilst you would certainly get older you wouldn’t get bigger, you asked me, “Will you still look after me when I’m big?”. And I told. you, I always will.
And its funny because whilst you have always been so desperate for your birthday to come around, you still cling to the fact that you’re just a little girl. When I tell you that you are a big girl now, or comment on how tall you have grown, a look of panic washes over you and you tell me, in the sweetest of little voices, “I’m still a baby though Mama.” And I guess you’re right, you will always be my baby girl.
Because sometimes it’s easy to forget that, given the fact that by the time your first birthday came around you were a big sister just four days later. Sometimes, when you read me a book or write me a story, it’s hard to believe that you are still so small. When you speak with such wisdom, or create another musical masterpiece, I marvel that someone so young, and so desperate to stay that way, could be so incredibly advanced, so mature, and so much wiser than I in so many ways.
Because honestly Megs, we could all learn so much from you and the way in which you see the world, and four was the year when your really came into your own. After years of struggles, from that screaming baby to that angry toddler, it turns out that you simply needed an outlet for your talents, the chance to be challenged, to turn all of that frustration into learning and development. And with starting school you did exactly that.
From that very first day, the proudest little girl in all the world in your school uniform, you have soared. You have learned to read and write with such ease, soaking up all of that information and translating it from pen to paper. You have received glowing reports from your teacher, across all areas of learning, and honestly Meggy, we couldn’t be prouder of you. Our clever little book worm, our future story book writer, you are truly amazing.
Obviously you have your moments, and four was far from perfect, but I’m so sad to say goodbye to the year you left nursery, started school and began a whole new adventure. The year when Eva was your best friend, Harry your partner in crime, and the year you waved Lewis off to school each morning, shouting at him down the road, “Just one more cuddle!!”.
Four was the year you believed in unicorns and fairies, mystical beasts and faraway lands, when you were convinced if you shouted loud enough, that Joseph would hear you. Four was the year when the sound of your laugher was the most wonderful sound of all.
Four was the year you danced in Welsh seas, built sand castles on southern shores, when you rode roller coasters and enjoyed donkey rides, ate sandy picnics and ice creams in the sun, went crabbing on the pier and flew kites at sunset.
Four was the year we went camping, when we sailed the Loch Ness, caught raindrops on your tongue and snowflakes on your lashes; four was the year when every day was your greatest adventure.
Four was the year you sang to us so beautifully, placed hand written notes on my desk to discover by morning, when you rushed to me at pick up, your hair dischevelled, your eyes sparkling with all you had learned, when you pressed your little head against mine and told me, “I missed you mama.” Four was the year when you loved each of us infinitely and unconditionally.
Four was the year you became everything you were supposed to be, and nothing that others expected you to be; the year we realised that our sensitive little soul had blossomed into the most amazing little brain box, grown so breathtakingly beautiful and so incredibly talented. Four was the year when you were mine and I was yours, and I would give just about anything to freeze frame those moments for just a fraction longer.
Because deep down, beneath that angry exterior and those difficult moments in which you see red, of which there are still plenty, you are just a little girl, desperate to be loved, to be showered with attention, and to be accepted. And you are, and we will, for always.
So here we are, five years old, and whilst I am so sad that you shall never again be four, I can’t wait to see what this next twelve months has in store for you.
Happy Birthday Megan Alicia, we love you all the stars in the sky. xxx