Should I Finally Admit He’s Grown Up?

As I write this, the four-year-old is on his first school trip. This week also saw both his first school play and school disco take place. So it’s been a busy week for him regarding school and experiencing such things for the first time. I guess thinking about these things have made the whole ‘him starting school’ as real as it could be for us as his parents. The last four months have flown by since he started and we’ve seen a huge change in him since September. I remember hearing about how a school can change them; I didn’t believe that until I saw it with my own eyes.

His behaviour for starters, as he picks up other traits from the rest of his classmates, it’s developed in so many different ways. We have the good behaviour where his manners have simply amazed us; he’s always been a polite mannered young boy but obviously being in an environment where these are often put to use have helped. He’s even more affectionate towards us all as he spends the day away from everyone, watching him hug his brother, tell him that he missed him and played toys together and catch up once home from school just melts me completely.

Then, of course, you have the bad behaviour which he’s picked up, argh is all I can say. All we can do is continue to teach Oli what is right and wrong and hope that as he gets older, he’ll learn which children have that positive influence on him and that the naughty children are just acting out. That bad behaviour doesn’t get you anywhere in life. We’ll continue to instil good behaviour in him and encourage this to be the way we treat people as well as the world around us.

Learning wise, we’ve been surprised at how much school could teach him that we could never do at home. We spent so much time with him doing numbers and letter work, but it was only when he started school that they gave him those basics in an environment which suited him. It gave him that stepping stool which he needed. Now he’s some number and letter machine who can happily count, talk the alphabet and writes out so much for us. We’re so incredibly proud of him. The school has also helped his speech & understanding come on leaps and bounds, we still have some work to do which we’ll put into action after Christmas with the help of the local services, but he’s made a fantastic start to his school education.

Dare I mention it, but we have girlfriends to contend with, yup Oli’s pre-school sweetheart still has his heart, and he adores her to pieces. She joining him at his new school made him starting school easier, having someone he knew and who could hang around with until he got to know the other children gave him that familiarity which at his age I can only guess was a tremendous comfort. He came home from his disco, and the first thing he told me was how he spent the evening kissing her, he apparently said the same to Daddy the moment he got in the car. So no shyness about this, I find it so adorable and I’ve already stored this memory away to share with him when he’s older.

He’s 4; it’s been four years and eight months since I bought him into this world. In that time we’ve seen the newborn, the baby and the toddler years through together. He’s no longer the baby of the house, in that time we’ve seen his brother come into the world which instantly made Oli seem so much older. Now he’s got a sister on the way; he well and truly is the eldest child. He’s the one his siblings will look up to, he’s not a baby in their eyes but for some reason I just can’t shake out that image of him being a baby still, one who once relied on me so much, who was his only friend and the only one who had his heart.