Dear Thomas

Another whole month has passed. You’re a little bit bigger. A little bit stronger. And ever more loved every day.

This month has been partly defined by your first proper illness. Of course you’ve been ill before. You’ve had an endless stream of colds, two ear infections and several bouts of sickiness. You’ve had a raised temperature necessitating a call from nursery at least three times, and have been sent home twice for throwing up. But this month’s bout of gastroenteritis was the first time you’d been so unwell for so many days in a row – eight in total. You were miserable and quiet, preferring to sit still on my lap rather than race around at breakneck speed – so not like you. (Whilst I hated to see you so forlorn, I did enjoy all the quiet cuddles!) You missed a full day at nursery, from start to finish, for only the second time in ten months. And you stopped eating. For almost a week, you survived mainly on breast milk and dry toast. Oh, and Mini Cheddars. For some reason you absolutely loved those.



Fortunately your appetite came back, and with it your boundless energy. Your favourite game this month has been “chase”. You love playing it at home with us. We’ll hide behind the sofa and pop up, roaring at you whilst you race away from us as fast as your little legs will carry you. You love to be chased up and down the kitchen with your toy carpet sweeper or your broom. And you love playing chase with the staff at nursery too.

You’ve always liked to copy what other people do and that has been so evident this month. You now love to brush your “teeth” (you still don’t have any real teeth, however) and also to try to brush ours. If you see your toothbrush, you reach out for it and it will keep you occupied for as long as it takes me to dry my hair in the morning. Speaking of which, if you see a hairbrush, you pick it up and begin to brush your own hair. This month you’ve also started to try to brush my hair! When we put cream on your dry skin before bed, you take it from our hands and rub it on yourself. You imitate us playing with your new tea set, pouring and stirring to your hearts content. You also demand to be allowed to stir real cups of tea and bowls of food. We can’t carry you past a light switch without you wanting to stop and turn it on. The off again. And on again. And off again…..


You communicate a lot of these desires to us by pointing. Pointing at everything. Sometimes we have no idea what you are pointing at and sometimes I don’t think that you do either. We pick up objects from the general direction of your finger and offer them to you. You’ll consider each for a moment before firmly shaking your head. The head shake is another top favourite signal this month. The only thing is, I’m not sure that you know how to nod, because you usually shake your head before grasping the object that you finally decide you do want! (And this is often something you can’t have, like the biscuit tin!)

Your ability to communicate with words is growing too. Yes and no are frequently used, but no much more than yes! And you love to sing to us. You say “row, row row” especially clearly along with “round and round” when you want us to do “Round and Round the Garden”…. Or do it back to us! The giggles we get when we tickle you are infectious, and even better than any words.

You’re still happily playing with many of the same toys, but you’ve added some new favourites. Maracas, a tambourine and an old biscuit tin form the basis of your very own band. You’ve spent some happy time conducting us in noisy banging and crashing, directing us when to start and stop shaking and banging by your own actions and by putting your finger to your lips as if to say “shusssssh” when we need to stop. I dread to think what the neighbours are saying! Pushing vehicles around, usually accompanied by a nee-naw noise, has been another frequent game. You even spied a toy fire engine in the bottom of the push chair whilst we were at the park and wouldn’t rest until you’d got it out and pushed it along the path for a while.



You’ve also mastered some new skills. You’ve started to identify body parts, although your head and feet are the only ones you will reliably get right. But you like to point to a part of your own body whilst pointing to the same part on ours. You are getting better at tower building and can now push Duplo bricks together all by yourself! You’re getting the idea that toy trains are meant to run along tracks, and will push them along even if they aren’t quite properly aligned with the grooves in the track. And you’ve come round to ride on toys, perhaps because your legs are finally long enough to brush the floor. You learned to climb the stairs several months ago, and then lost interest, but climbing has been back with a vengeance this month. You’ve cracked climbing on to the sofa, and just last week you climbed the steps of the littlest kiddy slide at the playground all by yourself for the first time. You took your time and did it slowly and steadily, despite an older child trying to push you out of the way. For some silly reason, the determination on your face, and your resolve not to be pushed aside made my heart swell with greater pride.


Your steely determination is one of the bits of myself that I see in you. You know your own mind and don’t want to let anybody or anything stop you. That’s why you still won’t hold our hands, or walk in anything like the general direction we’d like to go in. If you want to get somewhere, you’ll try no matter what the obstacles. Keeping you out of the kitchen entirely with a safety gate has now failed and we’ve resorted to latches on all the cupboards and moving everything out of reach… well, out of reach for now at least! We went to a play morning at your nursery just this weekend and you were the only child that managed to climb in to the area that was supposed to be closed off! You were probably in pursuit of a broom, since you’re able to smell one at fifty paces. We visited a friend a couple of weeks ago, and before I’d even got my coat and shoes off you’d run off and come back carrying a toy broom! At the nursery play morning you even had a tug of war over a broom with another child, which made me a tiny bit embarrassed. I do feel for you in these situations though, because whilst other children often just want something because someone has got it or wants it, you do genuinely want any and all brooms.

Despite all this, you’re still so happy. I watch other toddlers at the groups we go to and you’re usually the smiliest by far. At a new group it always takes you a short while to warm up, but then you’re off, racing around laughing and grinning at everyone. You make me so proud as I watch you go, lighting up people’s faces as you pass. And I love it when you run back in my direction to check in with me and share with me an especially big grin.

Keep smiling baby.

All my love, always

Mummy xxx





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