“Five going on fifteen”. I have lost count how many times I have used this phrase over the last couple of months. It’s hard to believe that my little man is coming to the end of his first year at school. Can someone please tell me where that time has gone?
It seems only last month that I was waiting to go to my three-month scan after finding out really early that we were having a baby. It seems only last week that I was getting myself all worked up about that baby starting school, when in reality that is now almost nine months ago and now the preparations have started for the beginning of Year One in just three months time.
School has changed the little man. Of course it has, and that is to be expected. But I suppose it is like anything to do with parenting – nothing prepares you. They wander off into school on that first day and I hate to admit this, but you never really get them back. That sounds a little extreme, I know, and perhaps it is. But there is some truth in it.
They grow up so very fast in the first year of school. Not just in their abilities, but in their personalities too. I could have a conversation with the little man a year ago, of course, but now they are on another level. Sometimes, not for the better, I hasten to add.
There has been, shall we say, a bit of an attitude that has reared it’s not so pretty face. Some answering back and some ‘lip’ as it’s been known to be called. Sometimes I look at him and wonder where on earth it has come from because our parenting techniques and attitudes haven’t changed. The only major change he’s had in the last few months is school and so I strongly believe that this is where the change has come from.
To look at him, you would think he wouldn’t say ‘boo’ to a goose. And if we are being realistic, 80% of the time, our little man is delightful. But doesn’t that 20% feel so much worse when it’s present? At school, behaviour isn’t an issue and for this I am grateful. When we are out and about, be it shopping, or at lunch somewhere, behaviour isn’t generally an issue and for that, I am also grateful.
What this has made me realise is that we are his ‘comfortable place’. When he is with us he feels comfortable to release all of his frustrations from the day. Being well behaved all the time when you’re that little and at school, can’t be easy and the fact that he does do it, kind of makes it all a bit easier to accept.
Mixing with other children and discovering different vocabularies, is bound to rub off and have a knock-on effect, so it is this that I am putting it all down to. This too shall pass, I am sure. And if not, then I am getting a lot of practice in ready for those teenage years!
Like I said, 80% of the time, my little man is wonderful to be around. The conversations we have can be fascinating and he teaches me new things every day. He has come on so much since starting school. He will now write in birthday cards himself and is always trying to read things he sees in different places. These are only a couple of examples. So you see ‘five going on fifteen’ isn’t a bad thing. He is growing into himself and becoming is own person. But it doesn’t make it any less scary for us, his parents, observing it all. Where was that pause button again?
They say they are only small for a short amount of time and it is so very true. With each month that goes by, he is another one closer to his sixth birthday which seems totally incomprehensible. What happened to that little 6lb 4oz bundle I held in my arms just last week?!
I know he will outgrow the tantrums and the backchat. I know one day we will laugh about it and only remember the funny things that he says and does. The Greatest Showman singalongs and the back to back attempts of the Three Marker Challenge that I always lose. Those are the memories to carry on making and to just take the rest with a pinch of salt. He won’t be little forever. Unless I do remember where the pause button is.
Little man may be five going on fifteen, but that’s just it. He is still five. It’s still only very small and it’s important to not lose sight of that. Fifteen will be here before we know it and I’m not ready for that. And I don’t need to be. Not yet.