I think I understand the real reason why Samson never cut his hair. It’s because his mother wouldn’t let him. No, really. There’s something about a little boy’s first hair cut that jettisons him away from his mother’s arms towards adulthood and Samson’s mum knew that.
It is not surprising, then, that I did some top-class procrastinating when it came to the cutting of Tiddles McGee’s baby hair. I’m really very extremely adept at avoiding things that I don’t want to do. Unfortunately, those very same procrastination skills were also applied to the brushing of said hair and it was rumoured there were many small birds in the neighbourhood who were seriously considering making it their summer residence. I even contemplated using the back of his hair as a cup-holder a number of times. Yes, it really was getting that bad.
And so, last week, my husband manfully took charge of the situation and cut away McGee’s somewhat dread-locked mane with his clippers. And there, underneath all that hair, we found ourselves a Big Boy.
And today, that Big Boy turns three.
It’s all been a bittersweet pill to swallow, my friends. A bittersweet pill, indeed – especially since Mr Justice has ceased to acknowledge me at all in public (see “Too Cool At School“). I mean, if he’s like this at seven, it’s entirely likely he will have changed his identity and moved continents by the age of fourteen just to get the hell away from me.
Tiddles McGee has been my consolation through all this.
“You still love, Mama… don’t you my iddle-widdle Tiddles?” I’ve often cooed to him, while trying to nurse him in my arms like a baby and vaguely wondering if Norman “Psycho” Bates was a youngest child. (Answer: highly likely).
And Tiddles still does love his Mama. He still curls himself in a little ball on my lap and tries to tuck himself into me. He still cries when I leave the house without him. He still rushes at me with open-mouthed kisses, full of love and just a bit too much saliva.
And today he is three.
Now I know you’re probably all thinking that Tiddles McGee deserves a nom de guerre more fitting a boy of his advancing years and Big Boy haircut than “Tiddles”. But sorry, folks, he ain’t gonna have one. No matter how big he gets, no matter how many degrees he receives or countries he invades or Cannonball-style roadtrip movies he ends up making, he’ll always be my Tiddles McGee. Fact.
And now he is THREE.
The road to three-dom has been hard for Tiddles McGee, who has had to endure a whole string of other (lesser) birthdays in the lead up to his own: his father’s, his brother’s, his sister’s and, most recently, mine. Why, just last Friday, he walked into my bedroom with the rest of the family, singing “Happy Birthday To You!” only to crumple into a heap of inconsolable sobbing at the end of the third line when he realised the song was for Mummy and not for him. The injustice of it all!
But today, Tiddles McGee, the song is all for you. Happy Birthday! Now, come give your mama a huggle and a big sloppy kiss on the lips. There’s a good boy.
So, you’re really three now, huh?
Oh, my aching heart.