Friday, 11 September 2015

Goodbye!

This will be the last post in Matthew's blog.  I feel a bit sad writing it because keeping track of his achievements has become part of everyday life, but the time has come to give Matthew some privacy as he grows older and starts spending more time with his friends and developing his own interests.  In these days of social media, although I've tried to be careful not to give away personal information, I don't want to cause him any grief in future by publicising his life - I noticed at his 7th birthday party last week his friend Ethan has an iPhone, as do a few other children of Matthew's age.  While I doubt they are adept at Internet searching and, even if they are, they're more likely to be searching for Ninja Turtles or Ben 10 than Matthew, I have a responsibility as a parent and also an 'information professional' to keep his life private.

I had intended to stop Matthew's blog when he went to school, and again when he turned 5, but having tracked his life since Louise was just 3 weeks pregnant I felt that it would be a shame not to continue.  Plus, so much exciting stuff was still happening!  Now, however, all of Matthew's key milestones have been passed.  He can even ride a bike, which I never could!  So unless I blog until he goes to secondary school or passes his GCSEs, there will never be a good time to stop.

I'm sure there are many more exciting developments happening in Matthew's life, but the difference now he's 7 is that these are much more likely to be with his friends or at school than with me.  He's hopefully now old enough to remember the highlights anyway, and what Matthew considers important may not be the same as I would think to include in the blog.

I still remember going to the first scan, and sitting outside the hospital room just before Louise had her caesarean, and I will never forget the moment Matthew was passed to me for the first time, and stopped crying when I held him.  He's learned to crawl, eat, stand, walk, talk, give up nappies, read, write, swim, ride a bike, and perhaps more importantly for modern life, use a TV remote, operate a touch-screen smartphone, use the DVD player, and raid the biscuit tin.

It has been an absolute pleasure to watch Matthew grow in confidence from a shy little boy unsure of his abilities (such as on rope bridges, bouncy castles and in play centres), which is why one of my proudest moments was when he started riding a bike earlier this year.  He's always showed signs of being intelligent and is one of the best readers in his school for his age.  Despite learning very little English so far in his Welsh medium school, he can now read simple English books and can read enough to tell what's coming next on TV, who the post is addressed to, how to do puzzles in his magazines, and so on.

One regret is that, since Daniel was born, I haven't been able to spend as much time with Matthew.  I guess this is the same with all multiple-child families.  I'm sure this is a sacrifice well worth making, though, as Matthew has a lot of fun with Daniel (even if he is reluctant to admit it), Daniel enjoys playing with Matthew (he told me this evening that Matthew is his 'best friend'), and both boys should benefit from having a sibling to turn to when they are older, especially given our small family.  I'm hoping as Daniel becomes more independent I will be able to gradually start spending a bit more time with Matthew on his own again - as well as spending time with Daniel as he grows up too. 

Some of my own favourite moments with Matthew have been taking him on holiday to Scotland, aged just under 2, when he was incredibly well behaved; watching the excitement as he opened his toy Action Chugger at Christmas; surprising him with a trip to Thomas Land; doing our first Easter Egg hunt; watching him enjoy the car fairground ride at Folly Farm; our first trip to Legoland; our first trip to the Dinosaur Park; going on the boat trip to Caldey Island and, more recently, our day out at Manorbier.

Next week, we'll start giving Matthew pocket money for the first time.  I guess it won't be long before he has his own bank account.  Maybe in another 7 years, I'll check back in and post an update... if he lets me!  In the mean time, I hope we'll continue to share a lot of good times together, and I now have a target to aim for - to take Daniel's blog up to his 7th birthday.


7 years ago, 11/9/2008
7 years old

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