Friday, July 19, 2013

Dear Nathan (10 months old)

Dear Nathan,

You're in double digits!  You have no idea what that means right now, but trust me, it's significant.  We have started planning your one-year birthday party.  A year old - it's so close now!

This past month saw a lot of changes.  We got an aquarium - your dad said it was for you, but he loves it as much as you do!  The two of you will sit there for a long time just watching the fish.  I think it's good daddy/son time.  Your dad and grandpa actually built the bookshelf that the aquarium sits in, and I helped your dad paint it.  It was fun, and is a welcome addition to our great room.

Speaking of the great room, the baby jail didn't work out too well.  You didn't really like being in it, and who could blame you?  You've got a mind like a sponge, and it's eager to soak up every possible experience!  You love to explore the house and taste everything and touch everything.  Yes, I said taste.  The things you choose to put into your mouth astound me sometimes!  :)  But it's your way of discovering things right now, so unless it's harmful to you or the object in question, I let it happen.  So what we did with the baby jail was to stretch it out to cover the two entrances into the great room, so you can't escape that room.  It's mostly baby proofed and is easily the largest space in the house, so it's the best choice.  Your toys are by the fireplace (which will never get used because Mommy is afraid of fire in the house) and you like using the (now very padded) hearth to help you stand up.

Speaking of standing up, you are "cruising" the furniture now.  I feel like you will be walking any day now, really.  And that's when the fun really begins!

You are still babbling a lot, and you sing too.  You have such a sweet voice.  I look forward to spending time in the car with you because we talk the entire time.  You don't like to listen to Clark Howard on the radio anymore, so I turn it off when I pick you up.  Then I put on some music and we talk or sing together.

You are playing with the dogs more now too.  Kaylee is obsessed with you.  She gives you her ball and you throw it (not very far yet, but you will get better!) then she runs to get it and brings it back to you.  Simon is still unsure, but he'll get there.  He runs past you and growls this little (nonthreatening) growl and you just chase him and laugh.  It's absolutely so much fun to watch!  You're very entertaining.  :)

One thing you have been doing that we are trying to stop is biting.  You like to use your mouth and teeth on everything, so biting is pretty normal and natural, but it actually really hurts, so we are working on getting you to stop doing that.

Other than that and the occasional middle of the night wakeup, though, you are an absolute delight.  We love you so much (even at 3 a.m. after you bite me because your bottle is empty!) and you bring so much joy to our lives.

Love Always,


Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Reflections on Motherhood (9 months in)

We've been through so much in the last 9 months.  An unexpected early arrival, a c-section, not gaining enough weight initially, low milk supply, RSV, eczema, a visit to the pediatric allergist confirming an egg allergy, injuries associated with becoming more mobile, and more.

We've also had lots of cuddles, a tiny voice that hums along with me when I sing him to sleep, a sweet hand that caresses my cheek when I'm holding him close, a smile that lights up the entire world, an adventurous and inquisitive nature, an appetite for new flavors that cannot be satisfied, a laugh that is sweeter than the most beautiful piece of music, and a personality that continues to amaze me every single day.  And intelligence!  He works on something until he figures it out, and that spark in his eyes when he does... it's just priceless.

I can see why people say they are "in love" with their child, although I always thought that was kind of a stupid thing to say.    But it really is kind of like being in love.  I find myself thinking about him randomly during the day - pretty much all the time.  I can't wait to see him in the evenings when it's time to pick him up after work.  I talk to him about my day, and ask about his.  He answers, but it is still in that language that adults cannot understand.  He's all I think about and all I want to talk about.  I have to really make a point to listen to the news on the radio in the mornings and read some information on the Internet about current events every day so that I will have something to talk about other than Nathan's latest funny trick or personality quirk.  I caught myself doing that at a baby shower last night and had to stop.  Nobody cares as much about a baby as that baby's mother does.  Except maybe that baby's father.  And/or grandparents, lol.

I feel overwhelmingly grateful that I have been entrusted with the care of this sweet, gentle life.  This precious person who will grow into an adult right before my eyes.  It's a miracle and a huge responsibility.

And I'm glad I waited.  Although it would have been easier on my body to have a baby earlier, and probably would be a lot less stressful to think about having 2.0 if I were... say... 32 instead of 36 right now, I am so glad I waited.  This baby, at this time in my life, is what I was meant to have.  If 2.0 happens, he/she will also be meant to be in that time, but if not, I will be okay with it.  I won't mourn if we are one and done.  Because this one has filled my life with so much joy and happiness.  Do we want another baby?  Yes.  We've always said we wanted two.  Will we try for one?  Yes, probably fairly soon.  But until that happens, I plan to enjoy the heck out of my sweet boy, who is more than I ever could have imagined, and I love him more than I can ever express.