To my perfect little boy,
I am so proud of you. Every morning you wake with a smile on your face and every night you go to bed with a chirrup and a grin. You face the things that scare you with bravery and courage and, over time, you improve and master them.
You love to spend time with other children, even though you can’t hear them very well and they don’t always understand you. You know what you enjoy and you spend your time doing the things you love. Nobody makes me laugh out loud as much as you do. You are cheeky and mischievous but most of all sweet, affectionate and carefree.
So your chromosomes aren’t perfect, but to me you are exactly that: my beautiful little boy. You tolerate the army of medical professionals prodding and poking: the physiotherapist, the paediatrician, the speech therapist, the audiologists and the geneticist. They all write reports and send them to each other in a bizarre spider-web of bureaucracy. The piles of paper, tests and opinions mean nothing to you, and nor should they: we are more than our medical history; we are more than what we can and can’t do.
You are obsessed by dinosaurs. The number five has magically disappeared from your consciousness but you can identify a Tyrannosaurus Rex, a Triceratops and a Stegosaurus from a mile away. Diggers, lorries, police cars and planes are infinitely exciting and you know the names of all the Thomas trains.
It took me a while to get the hang of you, and I’m sorry about that. I spent too long crying, sulking and generally being angry that the world hadn’t given me the genius child I expected to have. You see, my love, I had a silly notion in my head of what my child would be like and it wasn’t this tiny thing in front of me: who missed all his milestones, refused to walk and bum-shuffled around the living room. You taught me very quickly that children aren’t here to meet the expectations of their parents; you are your own person and do your own things, and my role as a parent is to watch, love and help.
There is a lot I can learn from you. Already I have learnt what the important things are in life: above all to make sure you are happy and healthy and safe. I promise you I will always be on your side. I will make sure you have everything you need and will fight, shout and nag anyone in range to get it for you.
I will always be here for you. My very best person.
All my love, xx
(Originally published on Selfish Mother, 9th May 2016.)