You will turn five on Sunday. That’s so crazy. You have reached the age at which you will start having consistent memories of your life. Not just blips that you will wonder if they really happened when you are older. Your dad and I might need to up our game a little bit so you will have less memories of just watching a ton of Futurama episodes over and over again.
I LOVED the age four. You grew and learned so much. You were much more fun than work at the age of four. In fact, you basically take care of yourself entirely now. I still sit in the bathroom while you shower/bathe just to make sure you don’t bonk your head and drown. You do the rest. Maybe not well, but you attempt it all anyway. You learned to tie your shoes last month. Then your teacher informed me that you learned how to braid this week. That’s nuts! You hang out and entertain yourself while we play tennis and gather our loose tennis balls with enthusiasm. You have started learning how to hit the tennis ball yourself. You are much better at both soccer and riding a bike. Proof that not giving up on something will eventually yield results.
I think it was your teacher who gave you the best compliment of the year. At your conference she said that if you were enthusiastic about learning something, then everyone in the class would become enthusiastic as well. And you are a very enthusiastic learner. That’s nice. I can’t top that or take any parenting credit for that.
I still wish you would eat different kinds of foods. I wish when I pick you up from school you wouldn’t immediately say, “awww” in such a disappointed way. Even though you are about to be five, I wish you still had time for a small nap during the day. You need it. Most of the times lately that you have been less than 100% fun have been because you are sleepy. Or hungry. My goodness, you still eat like a teenager. Turkey sandwiches, raviolis, chicken and rice, yogurt, apples, cheese, spaghetti-o’s, bacon, mac and cheese. You will eat chicken in various forms, pork chops, bananas, some other noodle dishes. That’s about it. You have parents that like to cook. We can get creative. We have tried all the things everyone say will work. I made you a chocolate milkshake once. Then I made one the next day that included half a banana. You definitely did NOT approve. We made fantastic broccoli cheese soup and pureed the broccoli down to nothing and added ham just for you. NO! Banana chocolate chip muffins just this week. You enjoyed making them. But eating them? No. You can be such a stubborn turdface. But we still like you.
Like all other small children that saw the movie Frozen, you were hypnotized by the music. Practically brainwashed by it. I’m sure you liked the movie, but you have only seen it once so far. But you know every word to every song. As do all of your friends at school. I’ve never seen a group of people get quite so completely swept up with something together like that. It’s adorable, if a little scary. I have a sneaking suspicion your fifth birthday might include some Frozen themes. We’ll have to see.
You are very into birds lately. Knowing about them. Looking for them. You are intrigued with the idea of being an explorer. You might have the sensibility for it too. I suggested we get a pet mouse to put through your Lego mazes. You seemed very excited not only by that idea, but also to then take that mouse to school for the class snake to eat. “No blood, mom! He eats them whole!” Needless to say, we did not get a pet mouse.
On the other hand, I’m afraid we have somehow raised a hypochondriac. You love for Dad to wrap your leg up in athletic wrap because random parts of you mysteriously hurt. You love to fill the blue ice pack up with ice and hold it on your head until you look like you have frozen your skin permanently. You’ll heat up the rice sock at the slightest bump of the toe. We can’t keep ourselves stocked with bandaids. There aren’t many things I won’t be able to accept about your lifestyle choices as you age. If you become an actual illness-seeker, though, we will battle. I have no patience for fake hurts. As I think you are only engaging in medical play right now, I’ll let it go for the weird pastime that it is. You usually turn around and try to fix us, Eliot, and your dolls in much the same way you have been fixed. Maybe you’ll be a doctor. Of course, your awesome braiding skills suggest you might be some sort of textile artist. Or the best darned small motor skills based factory worker there ever was.
I hope you have a good celebration today at school. You get to share today’s school party with your best friend and birthday buddy, Jasper. I’m sure he will love the blank paper you folded up and glued into a nice stationary envelope for him. And the thing is, he really will. Because as all your teachers and all of us parents have observed, you two dote on each other. We think it’s because you are both so tall.
This five years has flown by. We have now had you in our family for as long as we didn’t have you in our family. I’m glad we had time before you came along, but I’m so glad you came along when you did. What a fun time it has been. You just keep being you, kiddo.