I know I’m a little bit biased, but I do think that DorkySon is one of the loveliest boys in the world.
We walked past a shop window the other day that had a huge Victorian doll’s house on display.
“Ooh,” I said. “What a pity we don’t have room for that in our house.”
“I know,” said DorkySon. “It’s such a shame. But come here and let me give you cuddle to take your mind off it.”
I knelt down and he threw his arms around me in the middle of the pavement for a minute, before standing back to appraise my mood.
“There,” he said. “That was much better than a silly house, wasn’t it?”
I couldn’t really argue.
DorkySon seems to have come out the other side of the gigantic growth spurt that he was in the middle of last time I wrote a Live in the Now post, and as a result he has settled down quite a bit.
(To give credit where it’s due, some of that may also be due to the calming effect it had having DorkyGranny staying here for a week…)
He no longer feels the need to rush to the door and ‘pound’ DorkyDad as soon as he gets home from work – he’ll amble up to give him a big hug and have a chat instead. As DorkyDad sits at the kitchen table, flicking through his post, catching up on the day’s news, DorkySon stands beside him, cracking open pistachios and popping them into his Dad’s mouth. And rather than constantly clambering all over the furniture like a monkey, he has fun playing in a slightly more structured way; throwing or kicking a soft ball up and down the hallway with me for a good half hour every day.
At weekends, he barely moves from DorkyDad’s side. He snuggles in his lap to read a book, sits on his knee to play games on the iPad, and likes to hold onto his hand as we walk into town to do the shopping.
He has music in his soul, and will run to pick up one of DorkyDad’s harmonicas.
“Play me the blues, Daddy,” he’ll say, with a big smile.
Last Sunday morning, he came through to our bedroom and insisted on pulling DorkyDad through to the living room to listen to some Cajun music, and to dance.
“I knew it would make you happy Daddy,” he said.
On rainy days, we put on our wellies, and go to the park to jump in muddy puddles. Then we come home to play snap with his truck cards, or to build things out of dominoes. He asks all the time for me to draw letters or numbers with pencil so that he can trace over them with his felt pens. He loves playing mind games, learning new words, inventing bad jokes.
His wee brain is so busy, and doing so well, but he still gets enough things slightly wrong to make me laugh. He calls butternut squashes ‘buttoned-up squashes‘ and his nostrils are ‘nozzles‘ – both of which crack me up. His piercing little voice rang out loudly in the toilets of Sainsburys last week, asking me what ladies have ‘to squirt their wee out of.’ And he very politely stood to one side of the pavement the other day, but ruined it by shouting out to me ‘Mind out Mummy, let these old people past.’
In two weeks, he will turn four. We asked – just as we did last year – if he wanted to have a party, or to have some of his nursery friends over to play.
“No thank you,” he said. “I like it best when it’s just the Dorkys.”
I am sorry – a little bit – that he has inherited that streak of solitude from his parents. I am also pretty sure that he will grow out of it as he grows in confidence. According to his teachers at nursery, he is spending more and more time playing with other children, telling them how much he enjoys it, telling them how nice it is to be their friend.
But there will be no party, this year. We’re heading into London for a night instead. We’ll take him for dinner somewhere that serves milkshakes, and we’ll go on a boat trip up the Thames. All three of us are looking forward to it.
Despite my optimism last month, spring still isn’t here yet. We had snow fall over the weekend.
But there is such warmth in my life, right now.
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