As Ellenah Turns Six

As Ellenah Turns Six

As Ellenah Turns Six

As Ellenah Turns Six

Dear Ellenah, on the eve of your sixth birthday,

These letters are so much more than simply saying ‘Happy Birthday’ to you. To my best girl in the whole world. This is where I get to reflect on the past year, all of the changing you have done… All of the growing. All that we have been through together. All of the wonderful ways that you have become… You… As the most beautiful, clever, funny, charismatic, almost six year old ever.

There are absolutely millions of things that I could say about you from this past year… You have surprised me endlessly and shone so brightly… As you always do.

The year that you were five started so subtly, so calmly…

I was growing your baby brother, Dexter in my tummy and I didn’t find that the easiest time. Our days were spent getting from A to B, squeezing in the fun when I could manage it. I watched you a lot in those months. I watching you ever so closely. I was looking for signs that you resented our temporary pace. Observing your happiness… ready to pounce if it ever faltered from the smiley, energetic, slightly loopy little hurricane that you usually are. I’m pleased to say that you didn’t change and looking upon you in those difficult days made me feel such hope, happiness and strength… I will always be grateful that I was blessed with a little girl who is as cool as you are. Your smile is a healer sweetheart! As if by magic, you instantly make me feel better.

I noticed a lot about you over those months. I saw your imagination flourish as you played the most beautiful games with the tiny little figures that you had collected over time. You played alone quite often, content with your own company. You easily shut out the noise and lost yourself for hours in your world of make believe.

I saw you dance, even when I could not hear any music. I watched you leap, twirl and tell a story with your moves. I watched you twist, contract and lose yourself in the steps that you improvised so naturally. I smiled as you commanded your space to ‘Be You’. I held onto my beating, emotional heart as you did this. I saw a version of myself from years and years ago, except you are more expressive, confident and brave than I was back then. Probably more so than I am, even now. And I want this for you… To be better, to shine brighter… Than I ever could.

You made up songs too. Lots of sweet melodies. And the lyrics would always reflect your feelings…or just what happened in your day. Towards the end of the year, you learned a little something’ about rhyming at school and that became a lot of fun for you. Whatever the words though, the tune would always be bright, cheery, happy… Like you. Despite the fact that your songs were long, they would always make me still. They still do.

You learned to run even faster this year. People have commented in the years before, how fast and how far your body could take you and I would always nod and say ‘Yep, she never needs to stop!’ but in the year that you were five, You got extra speedy. Like Dash from The Incredibles. And I felt like I had to be even more like Elastigirl… always needing longer, quicker, more bendy arms to keep you safe. You won the running race at sports day. You left your classmates far behind. You made it look so easy and I will always remember your face that day, looking behind you, wondering where everybody was. It was amazing. It feels amazing… to have a healthy daughter, who loves to run.

On the 4th July, you became a big sister to baby Dexter. You finally got to hold your little brother, to look at him and into the eyes of this little person who you had already loved so fiercely in the months before. You crept in to meet him on the day that he was born and emotion washed over you, so intensely. You cried with joy as you smiled at him and you have helped me to keep him happy and safe ever since. Not a day has gone by when it seemed like the ‘novelty’ has worn off. You have done everything in your heart to make him happy. You have made me so proud of you. You handed over the ‘baby of the family’ badge with such ease and are practically bursting with love from within. You are a perfect big sister and it makes me so happy to know that your brothers have you in their lives. This strong-minded, spirited girl with the sweetest soul. We are all so lucky that you are ours.

You started Year One at school in 2017. Polar Bears class… With a teacher who resembles and teaches just like Miss Honey from Matilda. A teacher who thinks that you are wonderful too. She sees how you sparkle, just like the rest of us. In September, you were a little unsure of yourself and maybe doubted yourself a little too often. It is a trait that comes with being a perfectionist, which you are. You like everything just so, aren’t great with sudden change and you prefer your work to be neat and lovely… even if it means that you don’t end up doing as much. In September, you found reading and writing such a challenge. You were scared of getting anything wrong… Because one thing that never changes about you my darling, you hate to be wrong. By the time December rolled around though, you were flying. You had picked up so much confidence and everything seemed to click in to place so beautifully. Now you are thriving and have fallen in love with reading and story-telling. A girl after my own heart.

You were given the role of the wise lady in the Christmas nativity play too and this was something that you were very proud of. It still breaks my heart to know that I wasn’t there to watch you. Next year, I will try my hardest to get tickets for more than one performance, but this year, I dreamed that I would attend with Daddy and we would watch you for the first time together. Noah was poorly though andhad been sent home from school about thirty minutes before your show was due to start. He asked me to stay with him and even though it was the right thing to do… It was hard to watch Daddy get in the car and drive to watch you on his own. I cried the whole time that he was gone and only managed to pull myself together, seconds before you walked through the door. I asked Daddy to record your parts though and I watched them with you when you got home. You were fantastic… Such a star. It suits you up on stage!

Talking of the stage. You took part in your first dance show this year. It was at the beginning of December and you performed a ballet and a tap number. For ballet you danced to Winter Wonderland and wore a beautiful white tutu with a baby blue shrug. For tap, you were dressed as a little snowman. Olaf from Frozen actually because you danced to ‘In Summer’, a song from the movie. You looked so beautiful. You danced like an angel. It really was a big deal. You were so brave for dancing in front of so many people, with lots of lights blazing on to you and all while being so little still. You loved it that I let you take in my subtle pink blusher and a nude lipstick in your dance bag. Your face was beaming when you told me that you had shared them with the other girls when you were ‘getting ready’. It threw me ahead in time to when you will get ready to ‘go out’ with your friends in quite a few years time. I can imagine you and your girlfriends taking over our bathroom, music blaring and you stealing my nice make-up, the stuff for special occasions. I’ll pretend I don’t know what you are doing and giggle to myself as you walk out of the door, to have fun and to live your best life with abandon.

You achieved so much in the year that you were five baby girl and you should be so proud of yourself. I am… So proud of you. I could almost pop some days, when you are doing these amazing, incredible things for someone so tiny. I feel like that in our every day’s too Ellenah. When I see how kind, determined, courageous and lovely you are. When I see you smile sweetly with a glint of fire in your eyes. You are bold and you care… about people, the world, life.

You inspire me. All of the time. When I need to find courage and strength, I think of you, who you are… what you would do. And it’s almost as if I can feel the fire from your eyes, ignite a flame in my gut.

So you deserve this birthday, to be wonderful and everything that you could ever dream of. You deserve for everyone who loves you, to gather around you and celebrate the beautiful human that you are.

Happy Sixth Birthday My Little Bella-Rina,

I love you more than words could ever do justice!

From, Mama x

 

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Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby BrotherMeeting Baby Brother

Meeting Baby Brother

The moment that Noah and Ellenah met their baby brother for the first time, on the morning that he was born, was one of the best moments of my life. It was easily better than christmas morning, better than any birthday, better than most other days that has lead us to here actually.

Dexter was born at 1.55am, that morning. He was born in the very small bathroom of our family home. The home that has seen five of Noah’s eight years and all of Ellenah’s, other than just six months. It is a safe place. It is where the children have seen magic unfold, from the christmas’, the tooth fairy and even better,  to the games that they play where their imaginations have no limits.

It is the home that has watched Matt and I grow, up together and a little bit older I’m privileged to say. It is where we have fallen in love with each other, over and over again. It is where we talk about our future as a family… and together, when the children grow up and have lives of their own. It is where we laugh, where we are allowed to cry and it is where we are happy. Our home is where we dream together , about so many things. It is where we dreamt of this family. Our family. One with five of us. It is the home where that dream came true.

I was exhausted but awake when I heard the first creaking of a door opening that morning. I had been awake all night. I squinted my eyes in the darkness, to watch Dexter breathing. He was awake for the most part of it too. He was watching the shadows and flickers of light that made up the silhouette of his mama. He knew me already. I made him feel safe. He hardly made a sound the whole time.

My eyes were heavy by the time I heard the door that morning, so far from feeling ready to go to sleep though. I was on cloud nine. Walking on air. Singing ‘Happy’ by Pharrell Williams to myself in my head and humming it out loud, when ultimately I forgot myself. I had been waiting for this moment for nine, long months. It was my happy thought that kept me going since just before 10pm the night before when I had my first contraction. Our new beginning would mean that I had made it to the end. I let myself imagine what our lives would become. How it would change in the best ways. I could see how happy we were and are going to be. The smiles of my children meeting each other, meant so much to me.

I heard little, dainty footsteps. I knew that it was Ellenah walking towards our bedroom. Ellenah who we tucked in to bed last night at the same time as Noah, after telling them both that by morning, they should have a baby brother waiting for them in our bedroom. I knew that behind that door was a nervous little girl. One who was hoping with all of her heart that she would be opening the door to the boy, who was making her a big sister.

The door opened, very slowly. I saw her bright blonde hair first of all and then our eyes met. Her big blue eyes, full of hope, found me across the room. She tiptoed towards me, as quietly as she could. She stopped short of my reach… and I so desperately wanted to cuddle her. She stopped and turned towards the beautiful moses basket that had been waiting there, empty for two months. She gasped when she found it empty. Her face fell and she looked so sad. In her shaky, quiet as a mouse voice, she spoke. ‘No baby?’ was all she could manage in her disbelief.

She was right. He wasn’t in there. I couldn’t be apart from him. Even for a few hours while the country was fast asleep. We had been together for nine months. It was alien to have him anywhere else but nestled in my arms.

‘He’s here sweetheart!’ I whispered, as I pointed towards him, in-between Papa and me. She stepped forwards and looked over me hesitantly, to the middle of the bed where he was actually sleeping for the first time.

Words could never tell you, how beautiful Ellenah looked in that moment, so vulnerable and happy. Words could never do justice, to describe how every emotion that she felt washed over her face. Her large eyes grew bigger as tears sat behind them and the smile that she wore, I had never seen it before and I’m sure that I will never see it again. That one was for Dex. It was beaming but shaky. Her hand reached towards her chest and she gasped inwards, again. Almost as if she was breathless. Like she had been hit in the heart with overwhelming love. She looked at me and back at Dexter…and back at me, then Dexter again. She didn’t know what to do, what to say… how to explain how this made her feel. So I reached for her. My little girl. And, I held her so tightly as she dry sobbed with such joy. Her body vibrated against me with excitement and she asked if she could kiss him. I nodded and watched her lean over so gently to kiss him on the head. It was one of the most beautiful things that I have ever seen her experience and I will carry it within my heart until forever.

It didn’t take Noah long to bound in to the room after that. Noah being much less subtle in his ways. Noah who boldly pushed the door open and asked me if his little brother had arrived. Again, that look of hope was very much present… but the sheer excitement was apparent and definitely not something that he could filter or condense. Noah was true to his personality. Charismatic, bold, excitable and full of heart. He walked in with swag before anyone could answer him and clambered clumsily around the bed until he was at my side. He kind of landed there with both feet, flat to the ground and standing tall.

And then he saw him…

Noah’s eyes fixed on to his baby brother and rather than the emotion dancing across his face like it did with Ellenah… each and every feeling came out of his eyes, in tears. As they plopped down his cheeks, all big and fat…he looked surprised. And very much like his little sister, it was as if Dexter had taken his breath away.

Noah squinted his eyes and rubbed at them both with his finger and thumb. Pinching them together, he was desperate to stop crying. I asked him what was wrong.

‘I’m just so happy Mum… And I’m so proud of you!’ He told me, as his voice shook.

Hearing those words from my sweet little boy… the one who made me a mama first, broke me. The tears stung my eyes and it was almost as if I could feel my heart grow inside me, when I didn’t believe it could possibly make any more room. It had already made space for our third and final baby. Enough of it to love him unconditionally, until the end of time. I wondered how my heart could grow any more.

But it did… I think it does every day.

When my beautiful children say beautiful things. When I watch them get lost in each other. When they choose love. When they choose happiness. When they are kind, thoughtful… warm.

My heart grows because of them in so many ways.

While my heart was having a growth spurt on this day. While I watched Noah and Ellenah fall head over heels in love with their new brother, smothering him with kisses and looking upon him in amazement. It felt like everything was in slow motion. Like time had stopped. Like nothing else on this earth mattered.

Unfortunately, the clock waits for no-one. And with less than an hour until the children were due to walk through the school gates for a day of learning, we had to test out our new normal… try it on for size. Well, as much as I could from my bed.

Watching the children say goodbye to each other that morning was so hard because I just wanted us all to be together, in our new baby bubble. Seeing how they said ‘hello’ to each other though, seeing how Noah and Ellenah welcomed Baby Dexter into our world… The world, was priceless. A moment that I will never forget. A moment that I wouldn’t change. A moment that I could never wish was different. A moment that was EVERYTHING to me… Full of my favourite people in the whole world.

It was absolute perfection… x

 

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Ellenah & Pregnancy With Baby #3

Dear Ellenah,

Mama is now 37+4 weeks pregnant with your baby brother. Time will soon close on your promotion, how does that feel? For a long time, Daddy and I thought that you would be the baby of the family and now, you are going to be a big sister. It’s funny that you are my most feisty, strong-willed and sassy child and I am knowingly making you my ‘middle child’. I know that some people think I must be mad for doing so. But I can’t wait to see you shine brightly between your two brothers.

Ellenah & Pregnancy With Baby #3

I can see how you will be the bossy, stubborn and sometimes sly, little sister to Noah and the protective, nurturing and incredibly gentle big sister to your baby brother. You are going to grow and change in the most wonderful ways over the next couple of years. I can already see how much you love him and you haven’t officially met yet. You will learn so much about yourself and we will learn so much about you too. Being a sister to both of them is going to really allow your personality to take shape, be well rounded, spark your empathy and compassion… All while remaining the sweetest little girl, who we know, love and adore.

I don’t worry about you getting lost in the midst of ‘Team Langner’. You are everything that comes with the quote ‘Though She Be But Little, She Is Fierce’. You will never be left out, pushed aside or in any way, loved less. You bring too much happiness, joy, comedy and spirit to our gang. There is nothing invisible about you.

Ellenah & Pregnancy With Baby #3

Being from a big family and having three big sisters, my biggest support network… I did have the fleeting worry that you would not have one. I wondered who you would lean on when you want to talk about boys as you grow up, or to talk about how your friendship group has changed…How you are feeling when you think that nobody understands. I wondered who would be your maid of honour at your wedding if that is ever a path you choose. I tormented myself with the reality that you wouldn’t have anyone to ‘girl talk’ with late in to the night.

And then I realised…You have me. And suddenly, you being my only girl became something very special. I realised how far we have come and how close we are and not only that…how open we are with each other already. We have a special opportunity for our bond to become even tighter, if that is even possible. I realised that I would happily stay up, late into the night talking about your life with you. Be that about boys, your friends, your body as it changes… and I will always try and understand how you are feeling. I will always listen. I dream about the girly shopping trips that we will take, trips to the spa that we will hustle daddy to pay for and trips to the theatre. And even though I will be too old for ‘maid of honour’ status… wild horses couldn’t keep me away from coming with you to choose and pay for your wedding dress. Most importantly, I will be right by your side, lifting you up, being your biggest cheerleader through childhood, teenage years and growing into a woman. I will be there watching you choose your dreams. I will be there to help you chase them and I have no doubt in my mind that when walls stand between you and reaching them… I will be there to watch you crash through them.

Ellenah & Pregnancy With Baby #3

A new chapter is unfolding very soon my darling… and I can’t wait to see you throw yourself into it. You are not just a middle child Ellenah…You are my child. My daughter. And I love you!

Love, Mama x

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Dear Ellenah, You Are Five

Dear Ellenah, my beautiful little girl.

This is long over due. On the evening before each of your birthday’s, I will write you a letter… but on the evening before your fifth birthday, I couldn’t make it happen. I’m really sorry Sweetheart, it wasn’t because I don’t care. It wasn’t because you are not important. It wasn’t because I had forgotten. It was the most important thing for me to do that day but the best I could do was to write down my thoughts in the notes on my phone, hoping that this day would come. This day when I would be able to string together the sentences to better communicate exactly what it is that I want to say to you.

And just over two months late, I have found the right day.

Turning five is a big deal. I can’t remember anything about my fifth birthday but I can remember the feeling of turning five. Your big brother was impatient to get to this age too. It’s the age where things change. It’s the age that you have really started to show the little girl that you are becoming. The petite, inquisitive and sassy little diva that storms through each day with that beautiful smile and sharp wit. You are our delightful chaos. Forever known as ‘Hurricane Bella Roo’.

You are bold and fearless. You are strong-willed and spirited. You are everything that I could ever want in a little girl. You are a pleasure to raise. You challenge me in ways that nobody else can. You question me and you make me question the world around me… Everything and everyone in it. You seem to simply know things that it takes some of us years to understand. You make no apology for being exactly as you are and I love that about you.

Dear Ellenah, You Are Five

Some days I look at you and I see so much of myself. You smile like me. You run like me. You perform like me and you believe in the world like me. Other days, I look at you and see someone who I want to be. Brave, certain and rambunctious.

This past year, you have started to show what matters to you, who you love dearly and how you like to go about your day. You like your space… Alone time is very important to you. It is part of what enables you to be creative which is one of your biggest strengths. You communicate your real feelings clearly and never try and adapt your mood to anyone else’s expectation of you. I respect that about you.

Dear Ellenah, You Are Five

To be honest, as with each passing year and the bigger and more charismatic you get… there never feels to me like enough words in the world that can fully sum up just how wonderful I think you are. Just how much I love you, from the bottom of my proud mama heart.

It has just been so much fun, getting to know each side of you with each passing moment. To see such beautiful sweetness to your sassy. To see such kindness in your heart that balances out your strong will. To see you shine bright and bring out the brightness and light in those around you, those who have fallen in love with you for everything that you are and for the blessing that you are to this world.

I love how much you love snails and how you will always move them if they are in harms way, no matter how much it’s raining. I love how conscious you are of protecting the planet and our daily conversations about throwing our litter away. I love watching you play, watching your imagination soar. I love listening to you make up little songs about the things that you find important. I love watching you dance like mama used to. I love your dirty laugh and how bright red your cheeks turn when you find something really funny.

I love the way that you make every day better.

I love the way that you make me better.

Love, Mama x

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Finding Autumn At The Park

Saturday was the official start of the half term break and it was such a gorgeous day. The sun was so warm, so beautiful and it was beating through my bedroom window from the moment that we opened our eyes.

We spent the morning pottering around the house, being a little lazy and giving in the the freedom of the holiday. The freedom of the weekend. I managed to drink a hot peppermint tea while I talked to my little favourites. For ages.

It always surprises me in the most pleasant way how they see life, how when I give them a little time they will talk to me for hours, how they always want me to be included in everything that they want to do, play and make and how openly they love the family that they were born in to. How happy they are.

We ate lunch together, at the table where we talked some more, laughed and talked about our plan for the afternoon.

Finding Autumn At The Park

My sister and her beautiful little family were heading to us in the early afternoon to take the children out on their scooters and bikes. We were going to hit the park on such a beautiful day. It was too much of a perfect autumnal day to waste it.

Finding Autumn At The Park

There was so much excitement about our mini adventure. Noah watched the clock and Ellenah asked me constantly if it was time to leave.

Finding Autumn At The Park

Finally we were on our way and the kids zoomed off in front.

Finding Autumn At The Park

They enjoyed the park. They played on the outside gym, the zip wire and the assault course. We collected leaves and jumped around in them. It was just so nice to see the children wearing rosy cheeks, big smiles and laughs.

Finding Autumn At The Park

Finding Autumn At The Park

Seeing them all happy makes me happy.

Finding Autumn At The Park

Finding Autumn At The Park

Finding Autumn At The Park

Making memories with them, even the simple ones at the park, makes me feel lighter, content and like I am a part of something so incredible.

Finding Autumn At The Park

Being with them shows me life through their eyes. The beauty of it.

I’m so excited about the rest of half term and all of the joy, love and memories that will come with it. What are y’all planning on doing with your little loves?

With Love,

Ria x

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