Ever since I started blogging, parents, many far more eloquent than I, have described just what is special about the children in their lives.
In some cases, there have been birth stories; in others, life stories. Some kids have overcome awful illnesses or injuries; others have just been awesome.
Always, the children change the life of the parent. That much is sure.
And always, they are special.
So when it came to post on Australia Day - and I am incredibly patriotic - it took second place, because I was also celebrating the life of Mr 9 who turned into Mr 10 that day.
It was about enjoying the moment, yet today I feel I can't let it go by without posting something.
Because MIA is my blog about us. And one day, if either of my kids want to look up how I felt about them at any particular stage in their lives, I want it to be right here waiting for them.
I can't possibly write the perfect post about how much I love C. Nor how much he has changed my world. I would be writing forever, trying to get it just right and probably failing. And then I'd have to do the same for his sister.
Somehow, in my heart, I feel it may devalue our relationship to try and wrap it into a tidy post, and also, now C. is Mr 10, he's getting to the stage where he has the right to censor anything I write.
Don't get me wrong: He loves me writing about him. He loved getting birthday text messages from a few of my internet friends, and pages full of greetings from my twitter mates. He often asks me to take photos to put on the blog or to tackle subjects he's into. Or to ask questions of my twitter friends, who to him, are like a living, breathing encyclopaedia of wise peeps.
But I do feel there are some things that should stay private.
Instead I thought I'd list 10 things - because he's 10, d-uh - you may not know about C.
- He loves to cook and to eat. His specialties are omelettes and sushi, and he makes a great coffee or tea. (Under supervision of course).
- He loves animals. The third word he ever said after 'Dad' and "Mumma" (and I'm still Mumma or Ma), was Dei Dei. This was his name for our beautiful labrador Daisy.
- He has Aspergers Syndrome but it doesn't have him. It is part of what makes him who he is, and I wouldn't change it for the world.
- He likes order. He may find it hard to tidy his room, but if I help him, he loves it and feels settled and TRIES to keep it that way.
- He is anal about cleanliness. To the point where he won't eat anything unless he or I have prepared it (or he's watched it made in front of him.) (It's part of the ASD). (He's also anaphylactic to tree nuts and allergic to loads of foods, so there is reason behind his fears).
- When he was a baby and suffered extreme eczema, the paediatrician told us to bath him without soap and then rub him with olive oil. I turned that into massage sessions and he would always cry: 'Oil, Oil, Oil' as I took him from bath to change table. He still loves a good massage.
- He's very sensitive and spiritual, and loves yoga and meditation.
- He might not eat everything I put in front of him, but he will try anything at least once. He particularly loves spicy foods, like garlic, wasabi, and soy.
- He hates cake, much to his grandfather's consternation. (It's a sensory thing).
- He hates sandwiches, but if you toast them or put the contents into wraps, he will devour them with gusto.
And finally, oops, this is number 11, he can be the sweetest, most loving boy you can ever meet. As in giving all his pocket money to the victims of the floods, or giving little friends treasured toys they take a shine to. When we're out, and his little sister gets tired, he immediately stops and gives her a piggyback.
God, how I love him.
He is a mass of contradictions, and strength, and sensitivity, and I could not have hoped for a better son if I tried.
I love him all the way to the moon and back, and even more than that.
C. has taught me far more than I have taught him, and I treasure him. Every single day. Even when he picks on his sister or puts on a sulk or does the stinkiest farts known to man. And cupcakes me.