Dear Effie, on your 3rd birthday

Dear Effie / Moo-Moos / Former Baby Girl / Household Dictator,

Today you are three. Happy birthday you feisty, funny, frigging-challenging, GORGEOUS bundle of whirlwind girl. I love you. So hard. But that goes without saying.

It’s a bit of a weird blogging tradition to write a letter to your kid on their birthday, but your mother is a blogger and that’s how things work in this world of mine. It’s why you probably think I only have a camera as a body part on the end of one of my limbs, but I hope that when you’re grown and able to read this back you’ll do so with fond memories of me cataloguing our adventures and the daily routines of your life as a little person.

You arrived like a flash of lightning into the water in a birthing pool in a dimly lit room in the birthing centre of Royal Devon and Exeter hospital. Your birth was a quick, calm and surprising one. I was surprised by your speedy entry into the world and your dad was surprised by my lack of screaming. It was probably the quietest, most serene episode of your whole little life to date. Everything since then has been loud, hectic and never, ever boring.

Like a tattoo, you marked your place in our family with a permanence that had us all quickly forgetting what life was like before you existed. Even as a tiny bean of gangly limbs and rooting, gummy mouths you stamped your soul into our hearts and every corner of the house with a roaring finality. Like a hurricane, you turned us upside down. We couldn’t have been happier. (Although we were also very tired.)

At three your favourite things are: anything your sister has, anything you’re not allowed to have, anything that will wind any member of the family up. You also love all the predictable three year old things from Peppa Pig to peanut butter, cutting things out to crayoning on the carpet.

Bravery is a trait you wear with pride. It’s a point of honour for you, in fact. You never admit to being scared of anything, even if you’re secretly terrified. From swimming pools you dive into head-first to high surfaces you scale with a Spider Man-like ease you are fearless. A future stunt-double perhaps, or spy, or world leader. Whatever you decide to be I have no doubt you’ll jump in head-first, with a grin and not one single look back.

Your enthusiasm for life is exhausting at times, but I never want you to lose it. We might sometimes struggle to be carried along with your instant need to wear shorts on a freezing day, or a hoodie on a boiling hot one, or your determination to take your dolly’s buggy everywhere we go, or your interest in practising Parkour inside the house, but that doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate it. Life with you is a constant adventure – and not just an adventure in patience.

Freya was telling me this morning that she can’t wait to see your face when you open your birthday presents. Your excitement to turn “THREEEEEE!” is infectious. She loves you with a fierce, big sister protective glow, even when you’re trying to steal her favourite Jo-Jo bow.

We love you so much you funny girl. Thank you for being you.

Love Mummy, Daddy & Freya

(But please can we not start your birthday at 4am like last year?)

 

xxxx

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