January 12 to February 12, 2014Dear Emmy,
Hey, there, kiddo. Yeah, you, with those big soulful eyes and pouty lips and cheeks that threaten to devour your face. You with the whisper soft whimper that I hear five states away and that breaks my heart even though usually it's just you shifting in your sleep. You with the big leg kicks and little hands that grasp at my shirt or hair. You with those elusive dimples. You who have completely entrenched yourself into my heart.
Have I mentioned today how enamored we all are with you? Our little family seems like an always-four rather than a once-was-three. It's been an adjustment, not always an easy or smooth one, but it's also been a welcome one. I kind of can't even come close to explaining how much your big sister loves you. When I'm comforting you and say, "It's okay, Emmy, Mommy's here," Carys immediately chimes in, "And Carys is here too!"
I am so enjoying getting to know you and getting glimpses into your personality. I have a feeling it's going to be a big one, and a sweet one. You're already so very different than your sister and I can only imagine what differences we'll discover in the coming years.
You are a complete paci fiend, whereas after a few weeks your sister completely rejected it. Emmeline + Giraffe Wubbanub = BFFS4Lyfe. You don't generally want to be held to be comforted, which is a concept that just blows my mind to bits. Your sister wanted to nurse and cuddle for comfort; you would rather get a paci and the swing. Being able to set you down makes life ohsomuch easier when there's a bigger kid to chase after, but it makes me a little sad sometimes, because oh I don't know BABY SNUGGLES ARE THE BEST EVER. Luckily, I still get them sometimes, usually when you fall asleep nursing, but you're not permanently attached to me like I felt Carys was at this point. You do, however, love your Nana rocking you to sleep. Traitor!
You love watching the mobile on the swing, and fans, and sunlight on the walls (just like every newborn ever). You just recently started to enjoy baths - I was getting worried, because I was looking forward to swimming with you in a few months and didn't want to start you in class if you didn't like the water. You'll happily kick and splash in the bath with your sister (you've been sharing baths since literally your first bath at home, using a bath lounger that just sits in the big tub). Carys loves pouring water on your tummy or hair and singing the bath song she learned from swim class. "This is the way we wash our hair, wash our hair wash our hair...."
You JUST started smiling regularly. They're still pretty few and far between but sometimes you let go with the biggest, most heart-melting grin and it lights up your entire face and also, oh yeah, my entire heart. Carys was sitting with you and talking to you and you just sat there (ok, well, you weren't sitting, obviously...I was holding you there) with a huge grin on your face the entire time.
You are getting so big and already so strong. At your two month appointment you were around 13.5 pounds and just shy of 24 inches long. You were sitting up and holding your head up so well that the doctor commented he doesn't usually see that kind of muscle tone until closer to four months old. You love grabbing my fingers with your hands and doing a baby sit up to bring you into a sitting position and are not happy reclined. I seriously feel you might be sitting up by yourself like next week. I know that's not possible but come on, you're clearly a genius already so get on that already. You're starting to lose that baby hair (you have a big bald spot in the back, so it's mostly bald on top, with a strip of hair, a bald strip, and then a strip at the bottom) and I'm so excited to see what you end up with - light hair like your dad and sister? My dark hair? Your eyes, too, make me eager for the big reveal. What will it be? Your dad's brilliant blues? My dark brown eyes? Or your sister's gray-ish hazel? Right now they're big and dark blue exactly like Carys's were when she was your age. Hers stayed pretty blue for over a year and then developed the green-gray-brown shades that they have now, so it will probably be a while before we have any idea what direction they'll take. Your darling little elf ear is still present and accounted for but your Klingon ridge is gone. You have the softest hands in the entire world, probably.
Your cry is absolutely heart-wrenching and comes from nowhere - there's no stirring to indicate you're waking up, just a soft, mewing cry. And if we don't get you in a reasonable amount of time because, say, your sister has dumped an entire canister of hot chocolate mix on the floor (not that that ever has happened) (it totally has), it turns into the angriest cry I've ever heard from a baby. It's more of a yell than a cry and actually makes me laugh. You're already a better sleeper than your sister was (I think - at least I am not experiencing the soul-crushing, headache-inducing tiredness that I remember from her being a baby, although maybe I'm just used to it by now and have become immune to the side effects). You don't need to be swaddled or need a paci overnight - just the rock-n-play sleeper and a blanket tucked around your arms. You're not really on a solid routine yet - you're still sleeping far more than you're awake, so there's no real naps or bedtime, but usually from about 8pm to 7am you're pretty solidly asleep, and any wake-ups are just to eat and you go right back to sleep. KNOCK ON ALL THE WOOD.
You want to suck your thumb SO bad. You turn your head towards your little fist and try desperately to make contact; when you do, furious sucking ensues but it's not what you want and you know that. You want that darn thumb, but you just haven't quite figured out how to separate it from all your other fingers. You grab at my hair or finger or shirt while you're nursing - you love to have a handful of whatever you can reach. Seeing your little fingers work the fabric of my shirt or cling to a strand of hair for dear life kills me. I like to think you just want to be THAT much closer to me that you can't bear to let me go, but I'm sure it's just some newborn reflex...but I choose to reject that notion and go with the whole "you love me" thing.
Unbelievably, you are still sick. I hate that you've been sick with this awful cold for so long. You'll sneeze six or eight times in a row and have these terrifying coughing fits, and your eyes are constantly watering and red. I just feel awful that you got like a week of being able to, you know, BREATHE, and since then it's been such a struggle. What happened to the magic of boob milk that is supposed to keep you healthy?? Fail.
You're sleeping in my arms right now as I type this, and I keep glancing down to try to remember all I want to say and getting lost in your newborn smell and nuzzling your soft cheeks. Your mouth is in the most perfect pout and one hand is resting on my chest. I really need to go to bed, and lay you down for bed, but I really really really want to just keep sitting here with you, feeling your warmth and weight and wonderfulness. It'd be totally normal to just sit here all night long staring at you, right?
I love you so much, little girl. SO MUCH.