1803 days ago I gave birth to you.
That's 257 weeks and 4 days.
4 years and 342 days.
Or 4 years, 48 weeks and 6 days.
However you say it, it doesn't sound that long.
You were this tiny wrinkly baby. Evicted from the womb sooner than you were ready because you were upside down.
Life has been hectic ever since you were born and you have been a whirlwind of energy ever since you could move. When you were ten months old, I returned to work and I remained a full time working mum until I went on maternity leave to have your brother.
I have been home with you for a year now. It certainly hasn't come without its challenges. You are an utter delight but at times you are a ruddy nightmare. But for the most part, it has been ruddy wonderful.
We have gone on picnics. We have been to the park. We have been to the bouncy castle pub more times than I can count! We have been to soft play. You have stolen way too many of my marshmallows and whipped cream from on top of my hot chocolates. We have fed the ducks, watched trains, watched movies.
We have danced, we have had so many wonderful snugs, we have had tickle fights and we have laughed. Boy have we laughed.
You have been my helping hand since Oscar came along. Watching him whilst I am cooking your dinner. Playing with him whilst I am getting the pram out of the car or putting the rubbish out. Distracting him from his tears during nappy changes.
Now it's all going to change.
Tomorrow sees the start of a new way of life for us all.
Tomorrow sees your first day in school.
Good grief – school. How is that boy that I gave birth to 1803 days ago, going to school?
I mean, you are so ready. You are not stimulated enough at home any more. You need more. You need someone who can answer all of those questions that you have buzzing around your brain. You are so ready to learn everything. You want to learn everything. Just this week we have been talking about gravity and you love to try experiments – mainly with the hairdryer blowing things into the air.
You are so ready. But am I?
There are moments when I am counting down the minutes until you start. When you are answering me back, being rude to me, asking me for something over and over and over and over again until I am ready to explode.
But despite that, I am so not ready for you to go. I know I have Oscar here but the house is going to be so quiet without you in it for all of those hours. I feel like I have only just got you back, since finishing work, and now you are off…on new adventures…that for the most part – I won't be a part of.
You are going to meet new friends. Build new relationships. Learn new things. And all of it will be done without us.
And what about Oscar?
That boy is going to miss you even more than I will. His big bro. The one that makes him laugh when he is sad. The one that is desperate to play with him in soft play. The one that sits next to him on the swings in the park. The one that shows him how to play – and that screams at him when he breaks your train set up.
Of course, having access to all of your toys between the hours of 9 and 3 will soften the blow slightly. And of course, I can already see the beautiful happy grin of his when we meet you at the school gates come 3.15.
Zachary, it is time. Despite how sad your brother and I will be, how quiet the house will be, how different it will be at soft play; this is your time. This is all about you. Your uniform is ready. Your hair is cut. You are brimming with excitement.
There are going to be tears. I already know there are going to be tears. Probably from both of us but most definitely from you (I am going to do my best to hold mine back so that you don't get affected by them). But I just know, that after a few days in your settling in period, you will be just fine. You will have made friends because you make friends wherever you go. You will love your teacher, you will love your classroom and you will be having the best time.
This stage in school is the most fun.
Embrace it, enjoy it.
You are going to shine darling boy.