My darling son,
Do you know what I’ll be doing right after I type this letter and press the ’publish’ button on BlogSpot? I’ll be cuddling up right next to you, keeping my promise to you.
You see, sometime in the afternoon, barely 12 hours ago, we were relaxing in your Dida’s house. We were talking about somebody’s, ahem-ahem, sixth birthday and that’s when you turned to me and said, “And for night-time mamma, please will you sleep in my bed?”
Oh my baby, how could I not?
How could I not want to look into your handsome, peaceful face as you dreamed dreams of the Divine and had your conversations with God?
How could I not want to peer at your sleeping form and gaze in wonder at this body that had become more than half my height, yet once lived inside of me, no bigger than a grape?
How could I not want to be squeezed awake by the tightest, happiest, warmest bear-hug ever given to me on the first day of your sixth year?
Happy sixth birthday my son, my boy, my pride and joy.
What a year it’s been for you.
I’ve seen you change schools for the third time in your young life and as before, you took my breath away. You didn’t throw tantrums. You adjusted on the first day itself. You made friends and found things to love about your school right from day one. Your new school has been more of an adjustment issue for me, than for you. You just embraced the change, recognised it as a part of your life from now onwards and soldiered on. You’re quite the little trooper and it never ceases to amaze me. Of course, you’d still be happier if there was no homework and if assessments didn’t exist, but then, so would I!
You started cricket class this year and you LOVE it! You look forward to it with glee and even though you need to take a million steps before you become a Sourav Ganguly, I am enjoying watching you enjoy yourself. Karate continues and you are an orange belt. I wish you had the same enthusiasm for it as you do for cricket, but at least you don't hate it. You go for it, because...well, because I make you, quite truthfully. Let's see, next year might see some changes in your co-curricular life.
You love travelling. At the beginning of this year, we took a family vacation to the Andamans. You are such a water baby, just like me! And you take delight in anything new and show your joy and enthusiasm with the pure, unbridled joy of a child that is so healing and soul-satisfying to watch. I’ll never forget your excitement on the glass-bottomed boat as we saw all those schools of rainbow fish, starfish and corals. And while on the subject of vacations, you went for your first international holiday. Although the trip was cut short due to a family emergency, we certainly made some happy memories which I shall cherish for a lifetime. How sweetly you chatted with your friend on the entire flight from Kolkata to Bangkok. How excited you were when you saw the hotel where we were staying. How thrilled you were when you saw that heavenly bathtub in the master bed-room. How deliriously happy you were when you saw the kids’ activity and playroom. How mesmerised you were by the show at Phuket Fantasea.
I’ve been reading to you almost ever since you were born in an effort to inculcate a love for books. Well, you certainly do love stories...and how! You’re ever ready for story-time, you love making up stories of your own, you follow the plots and dialogues of new movies with wide-eyed interest and always ask me the most astonishing and in-depth questions. It actually fills my heart with an unnameable pride to see you take a story book and pore over it, taking in each and every detail. I love how you take the story outside it’s life-span of those few pages and give the characters a new lease of life in your fantasy world, making up new adventures for them to face, new people for them to meet. What a lovely world you create, my son.
I also saw you try and desperately fit into the Age of Boyhood this year, shedding the last remnants of Toddlerdom behind. I saw you try and struggle with your emotions and try to keep them under check. I saw you fight tears and put on a brave face. I saw you stand at the fringes of games wanting very much to be a part of it all, but too hurt by unkind words and actions to swallow your pride and give in.
But there’s one area, where you haven’t been successful in becoming that Big Boy that you are so ready and anxious to be. And that is in the area of hugs, cuddles and ‘ador’. You love being the baby then and aren’t afraid to show it. Mamma’s lap is still the best place to read a book or watch TV from. Mamma’s arms are still the heavenliest place for a sound sleep. Baba’s tight embraces are still assurances that you are his ‘hirer tukro’. His bear hugs remind you that nowhere else in this world will you feel safer and more cocooned.
Oh my gentle son with eyes that say everything his heart wants to but can’t, do you have even the slightest idea what you’ve done to me? You’ve turned me into a mom. You’ve helped me become the best version of myself that I can possibly be. You are one of my greatest teachers. You are one of my greatest partners in fun. You are one of my life’s purest forms of bliss, love and joy. You are also my greatest prayer to God; for each time I see those eyes sparkle with the brightness of the North Star and that bone-melting smile, accompanied by that giggle that plays on my heart-strings, stretch across your beloved face, I can't thank God enough for giving you to me.
And I’m so grateful you’re mine.
Happy birthday, my EO. I want you to know that you’re smart, funny, caring and sensitive, and you are so full of surprises. Continue being just the way you are. And one day, in the not too distant future, you’ll turn into a gem of a man.
But for now, you are a gem of a boy.
And I’m so grateful that you’re my precious, priceless gem.
With eternal love and blessings,