January 7 - February 7, 2012Dear Carys,
It seems I start every letter with some variation on the theme of, "How are you this old already??" The weeks and months are shooting by faster than I can can grasp. It's impossible to imagine that you're closer to being a year than to being born. If we were rounding to the nearest year, you'd be one. I should probably book the clown and pony for your first birthday party which will be like tomorrow the way time is flying.
Every stage is a million times easier and a million times harder than the one that came before and I could never pick a favorite, but I'm loving this one pretty damn much. This is how I feel almost constantly: overwhelmed, tired, madly in love, and deliriously happy.
The biggest news from month six to seven is the beast that is known as separation anxiety. Separation anxiety means choosing between a crying baby and peeing alone. Separation anxiety means you are constantly trying to climb up my body and that once you cried when I was right next to you but had the audacity to look away for a moment.
Separation anxiety means you will only nap next to me.
The only way to extricate myself is to slowly build a pillow Lara next to you to replacing one section of my body at a time...and it only works sometimes. Other times, you wake immediately upon sensing that my body has moved away from yours, and cry until I return. Separation anxiety means I've spent many hours laying next to you in bed, playing Words with Friends while you nap (thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster that you still go down for bed just fine, and you go down for naps in your crib with your dad and Samar).
Separation anxiety means maneuvering myself to always be in eyesight of you, lest, you guessed it, tears come. Separation anxiety means watching you scramble to climb out of the bathtub to be in my arms, because of course bathing means that I am not holding you right that very second and you must right the wrong that has occurred.
Separation anxiety means you cling to me like I might run away at any moment (Carys: I will never!). Separation anxiety means not getting a second to myself, but separation anxiety also means feeling like the most important person who has ever existed. I am trying to appreciate this phase and drink in the attachment you have to me right now, because I know all too soon you'll be screaming at me to "OMG GET OUT OF MY LIFE, MOM!" and slamming a door in my face. Ah, teenage hormones. Did I mention that while I know I signed up for being a baby mom I'm not sure I want the job of a teenage mom? But seven-month mom? I'm loving this.
Seven month olds also eat a lot.
Seven month olds also eat a lot.
And, like I said in your six month letter, I love watching you eat like a real live person.
While you get two meals of solids a day - of which asparagus (?) and brussels sprouts (??) are your favorites - you still nurse every three or so hours during the day.
And the nursing? I adore it.
Nursing has long been one of my favorite activities, and the experience is almost poetic. Your hands idly explore my face, discovering my nose and mouth (and occasionally scratching the crap out of me). Your chubby, dimpled fingers work buttons and fabric and snaps and straps and strings and trace the contours of my skin.
When you're awake, your legs kick against my side, your hands beat my chest, and you look around deciding what you'll do as soon as you're done. When you're especially hungry, your eyes roll up in sheer pleasure like a junkie getting his fix. When you're tired, your movements slow until you fall off the breast, and occasionally you will startle and blindly attempt to latch onto something, anything again. During your naps (which I spend next to you thanks to the aforementioned separation anxiety), you sleep suckle and the sweetness of your tiny lips working fills my heart to bursting. Your small body is a furnace against mine, and I drink in the smell of your milky breath and rest my head on your soft cheeks and stroke your downy hair and wonder what I did before you that mattered.
Did I mention yet how much I love you?
You went to your first basketball game, and much like hockey, loved it. You loved rooting on your Uncle Chris and sitting with Aunt Jenna as well.
You also had the unique experience of causing someone to physically break...literally. We were at your Grandma H's for your Aunt Ana's birthday, and while holding you she threw out her back completely, to the point where the only thing we could do for her was to call an ambulance. She was in massive amounts of pain and you were terrified for her. She ended up being in the hospital for several days, and to make her feel better we sent her a picture and NO it does not say 'aunt anal.' Possibly she should have considered how 'ana!' looks in certain fonts. Anyway, when you're older you should make her cookies or something to make up for it. (It wasn't your fault, by the way.)
We had a few insanely warm days the month of January - we're talking sixties. IN JANUARY. AKA my dream came true. (Of course, there's six inches of snow on the ground now to make up for it.) We took full advantage of the warm weather, going on walks every day and going to the zoo.
You sit, you pull up to a stand, you attempt to swim across the floor with your arms and legs flailing in the air.
You smile and laugh at everything and nothing, like fake hiccups and magazines on heads. You make the most amazingly expressive faces as you sit and talk to yourself and conduct your invisible orchestra. You have 6-12 month clothes that swim on you and 6-12 month clothes that are already too small. You have baby rolls in all the right places and the cutest belly button I've ever seen. You love to read, and love to pull all the books off of your shelf. You will sit through four or five books at a time, turning the pages for me.
You love to bang things together.
You give open mouth sloppy kisses on my cheek. You drink water from a sippy cup. You love swim class and you love watching the other babies. You love the zoo and you love the dog. You reach for everything in sight; nothing is safe. And you're surprisingly nimble and your ability to grab something that was set out of your reach is shocking. You love touching things; anything with a surprising texture fascinates you.
Some mornings you cry, but more often you lay in your crib and babble to yourself until I hear you and come get you. You spend the next hour in bed with us, climbing on your dad, pulling his hair, and playing with the myriad of toys that have ended up in our room. Every thirty seconds or so one of us scoops you up for hugs and kisses and proclaims how cute you are.
It's impossible to not. You're irresistible.
You are a pure delight and bring the most incredible joy to our life. We love you beyond words.
How could we not?