The last six weeks of your life have been, by far, the most interesting and the most challenging. You’ve had more than your share of whiny, cranky, miserable days, but you’ve kept your dad and I laughing in amazement more often than not. The days run together as I think back on the big things in the last month –
- You fed yourself for the first time. It started with jelly beans, but then moved quickly to goldfish crackers, carrots, broccoli, french fries, and bread. The process is a little tricky because you’ll stuff whatever you’ve got in there until you choke, unless I ration it out to prevent that.
- You go up – and down – the stairs all by yourself, whenever you want to.
- You shake your head for “NO” and “YES” when it’s appropriate.
- You point. You point when you want something especially, but you do it often.
- You call me MaMa and your father DaDa.
- You say “thithe” for kitty, and a lot of words I can’t decipher.
- You like to communicate, waving all the time and talking. Your babbles sound like sentences, and you’ve even learned some voice inflection. Just yesterday, I told you “Don’t talk to me in that tone of voice!” because I wasn’t sure what words you thought you were using, but you were obviously mad at me.
- When you want “up,” you stand at our feet with your hands up and bounce up and down.
- You give high fives on demand.
- You can entertain yourself for longer and longer periods.
- You’re walking. You aren’t always confident or steady, but you’re doing it for more and more steps each day. (Last night, you walked the whole way across the living room without grabbing onto anything or falling over.)
- You climb up. You can get up onto a chair if it’s not too tall, out of the bathtub, onto the step ladder, and onto the couch.
- You go about your business with things dangling from your mouth. One day it was a sock, another day, an envelope from your house. Yesterday, it was a letter from the bath toys. It makes your dad and I laugh until our sides hurt to watch you crawl or walk around like a puppy with a bone.
- You refuse to eat baby food. At day care, you’ll only eat oatmeal and Gerber graduates. (No homemade food for you! You want what everyone else is eating.) At home, you’ll eat whatever Dad and I are eating. Bananas and oatmeal are your favorite foods.
- You like bananas so much that you’ll eat them, peel and all, if we don’t take the peel away.
- You will taste almost everything, a fact your father delights in. However, if the food offends your palate, you stick your tongue out and shake your head until it falls to the floor.
- You give kisses. To me. FINALLY.
- You’re a problem solver, through and through. We’ve found a scant few obstacles can stand between you and your goal.
- You eat cat food, no matter how many times we tell you that it’s yucky, you still grin and shove it in your mouth.
- You sit in a chair. Many times, especially out at a restaurant, you refuse to sit in the high chair, and we have to give you a grown up chair to sit in.
- You love to go to the park and swing. You sit in the swing, wide-eyed, and laugh the whole time. When we take you out of the swing, you get mad and cry to go back.
- You like to ride in a wagon.
- You can put yourself to sleep for a nap. It was amazing and beautiful. The few times it’s happened, you crawled up in my lap, laid your head on my leg, and went to sleep. Angels sang and light shone down from heaven. (Okay, I made the last part up, but it happened in my mind’s eye.)
- Have I mentioned that you’re walking? Consistently. Since 10 months.
- You had your first ear infection. It was terrible, affecting your entire life. Your dad and I were beside ourselves because you were so obviously hurting, and there was not a thing we could do. The worst of the pain, misery, and sleepless nights lasted for over a week.
A few “old” things you still do –
- You clap, especially when I say “Yeah Gracie!”. You clap with excitement, and you’re excited a lot.
- You have two laughs – a silly growly laugh and a real belly laugh.
- You assert yourself. It’s next to impossible to force you to do something you don’t want to do (lay for a diaper change, for instance).
- The teeth that have been ready to burst through the gums are STILL making your mouth sore. They haven’t come through.
- You still resist your naps. I can see the end of the 2-a-day naps in the very near future.
And, because this letter isn’t long enough, an anecdote that made me smile –
- Every day, when I come home from work, I go to the bathroom. It’s an odd habit. Anyway, I’ve always taken you with me, and you typically just sit on the floor and tinker around with your bath toys. This month, you started getting up and leaving. More than once, you’ve been dumping cat food all over the place before I got done and went looking for you. (I’ve learned to shut the door and block it with a weight so that you stay put.)
Now, on to months 11 and 12!
© 2008, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.