My beautiful, crazy, loving, hilarious, determined, sweet little Meggy – today you are six. I’ve spent the last hour staring at an empty screen trying to find a way to put down in words exactly what I want to say but, regardless of what I type, it will never be enough. There is something about you Megs which just makes my heart burst with pride and I’m not sure I will ever know quite how to portray that to those who don’t have the pleasure of knowing you.
When we talk about our family and our plans to have children, we often refer to Harry as our bonus baby, the fifth little one who was simply meant to be. And yet the truth is that Harry was always part of our original plans, the idea being to have a two year age gap between Eva and a sibling, and it was in fact you who sneaked along in the middle, and became the bonus baby we couldn’t imagine living without.
Of course it hasn’t always been plain sailing with you Meggy and this year has been exceptionally hard with your emotional outbursts and your violent tantrums. I have spent the best part of this year doubting my ability as your Mummy, questioning all of our decisions, gritting my teeth and counting to ten, far more times than I care to remember, doing everything right, and sometimes all wrong, in a desperate bid to help you. We’ve been up and down and back again, gone round in circles so many times I’m not even sure where we started, but slowly but surely we’ve made progress, and as much as you have learned some important coping mechanisms this year, so have I.
Because it turns out you’re a lot like me in so many ways Megs and maybe that’s a good thing, or sometimes perhaps not so much. You’re extremely sensitive, a real worrier, an over-thinker, and combined with the fact your intelligence exceeds your emotional maturity, it’s only natural that there are times when things gets overwhelming.
The thing with you is that we never know which Megan we are going to get. You could wake up the happiest, sweetest little girl in the whole wide world, or so angry and emotional that it’s inevitable our day is doomed. It’s funny because even on the days where you have cried from the moment you wake until the moment you sleep, when I have lost my patience with you before breakfast is even finished, you will still say what an amazing day you have had. On the nights when it has taken me 3 hours to get you into bed and I have well and truly lost my sh*t with you ten times over, you will throw your arms around my neck and tell me that I’m your very best friend. The way you love unconditionally, and the way you forgive irrespectively, is so inspiring and I am learning all the time from you, we all are. I only wish that everyone could be a little more like you, I wish I was.
I could sit here and reel off hundreds of wonderful things we did together this year, from our holiday to Spain, to our return trip to Lapland; I could write list after list of the places we have been and the things we have seen, and yet I know, for you, that’s not what you will remember. Although you have adored each of our holidays and days out, and as much as you have embraced every new experience and trying new and wonderful things, they aren’t the memories you would share should I ask you what was your favourite thing from your fifth year.
You would tell me it was the chocolate coins stuffed into the end of your stocking, the strawberry ice lolly you enjoyed in Nanna and Grandad’s garden, or the first night sleeping in your new rainbow bedding. You’d tell me it was eating spaghetti carbonara from a big girls plate, opening the first page of a new book, getting the window seat on the train, or sitting upstairs on the double decker bus to your Year 1 class trip.
You would tell me it was how high you had jumped, or how fast you had ran, how you could spell the longest word in the whole world – beautiful. You’d tell me it was swimming underwater for the first time, eating chicken nuggets and chips on a play date, catching two of the biggest and baddest crabs off the pier in Devon – Chompy and Stompy.
You would tell me it was the times when I let you have a galaxy bath bomb, or the unicorn shower gel I quickly bought for you passing through Euston Station. You’d tell me it was the windy day at the lighthouse when your hood would’t stay up, your shiny new school shoes, the day Lewis finally let you have a turn on his X-box.
You would tell me it was the mint left on your pillow in a hotel we had stayed, the slice of lemon in your drink that night at dinner, the Elsa plait in your hair, the pretty dress with the swirly skirt, the excitement of the twisty cereal dispenser at breakfast the next morning.
You’d tell me it was the whoosh in your tummy as the plane left the runway, the rainbow we spotted on a cold and grey day, the golf umbrella you held until the wind blew it inside out, the day you laughed when Harry climbed out of the Wendy house window, or the night Eva let you sleep in her bed, even if just for a short while.
You’d tell me it was the moment you left sand in the shower after a day on the beach, or the time a monkey pressed his face to the glass at the zoo; you’d tell me it was the Spring day you took Joseph some daffodils, the boat trip when Daddy let you wear his sunglasses, the afternoon when we walked to the shop and I let you choose a Choc-Dip and a children’s magazine.
You’d tell me it was that time in assembly when the music blared out too loudly and everyone had laughed, or the weekend when mud squelched over your wellies as you under-estimated a puddle. You’d tell me it was that night we curled up and watched The Greatest Showman for the 568th time, or when you wore your favourite pink hoodie with a “M” for Meggy for seven days running.
You’d tell me it was that Tuesday when I let you stir the sauce on the hob, or that Friday when you got to push the trolley around at Tesco; you’d tell me it was a Sunday when daddy danced with you in the kitchen, a Wednesday when we let you help paint the lounge, that Monday when you held Oscar’s lead in the park.
You’d tell me a thousand different versions of the last 365 days, and not one would be as I remembered it. And that right there is why you are so special to me Meggy, because when I see the world through your eyes it makes all of our troubles melt away and the world as you know it is utterly beautiful.
For such a long time I questioned why you didn’t see the world as we do and yet now I know it’s why – it’s because your way is better.
Happy birthday my beautiful Megan Alicia.
We love you all the stars in the sky.