Five Months

Dear Andrew,

If someone would have told me even five years ago that I would spend part of my days taking a four-month-old to the toilet, I would have laughed in their face. Yet, here we are. You seem to dislike soiling yourself so much that you fuss and squirm until someone takes you to the bathroom, where you often promptly do your business without any extra cues from me. I’m astonished, and yet, there are other people who start this process from birth, so I know I’m not the only one who has experienced this phenomenon. We’re not pushing it, and most of the time, I’d just rather have you in a (super cute cloth) diaper, but you do really know how to communicate that need. I just never thought I’d be one of “those people.” I never thought that I’d have a kid using the toilet before he can even sit up. Just another one of your wonderful surprises, I guess.

And speaking of sitting up, you’re trying so hard to do just that. You are okay on your tummy for a little while, sometimes even lying on your back is cool enough with you, but sometimes, there is nothing that makes you happier than trying to sit on your own. You look so proud for those few moments when you’re able to balance yourself upright on your bottom until you tip over. Your brother is highly amused at this stage of your development, and he demands that I sit you up as much for the practice of helping you master sitting as for the part where you topple.

You have started doing this funny fish-like motion with your mouth, which is probably because your family has enjoyed the smiles we’ve gotten by doing that very thing. Well, little one, you have turned the tables on us, here, and that opening-and-closing act gets us smiling and laughing with you ever time. You often add your own vocalizations to the motion, resulting in a kind of pfladablah sound, which makes it even better. You like to talk and often shout with fingers, toes or toys in your mouth. It’s insane how much some of those rattles seem to rile you up sometimes.

You sleep better than I do at night, and I’m never going to complain about that. You do tend to sweat more than any baby I’ve known, which is a little strange, but it doesn’t bother you at all, so I’m good there, too. What I love about you when you’re tired is how you “talk” yourself to sleep. Sometimes you’re upset enough that you cry and complain, but often, you just kind of sigh and groan until you pass out. It’s adorable. Like you.

Speaking of sleep, however, there is just one thing I’d like you to work on for me and your daddy if you could. I’m sure that I’ve contributed to this, but your inability to sleep anywhere but near a breathing body is getting a little old now. It’s funny that you used to be able to drift off on your own or even be put down asleep when you were a lot newer at this whole existing thing than you are now. The thing is, a lot of the time, I have to wear you just so I can get something done around the house or work at the diaper store. When I put you down, you always wake up, except, on rare occasion, in the car. I’m sure this will get better eventually, but it would really do your parents good if you could sleep on your own just a little more often. I promise, you’ll live to tell the tale.

You can move yourself around pretty well now. You’re still not crawling, but you’re obviously motivated. When you see someone or something you want, but it’s out of reach or across the room, you pull with your arms and push with your legs and twist and turn and somehow manage to get closer to your destination than you were before. We’re still figuring out a solution for keeping your brother’s tiny little toys out of range, but so far he’s actually been really good about keeping an eye on you. And he at least lets us know when he’s happened to place a Lego or action figure hand somewhere within your reach. Not that he does it on purpose or anything.

You are easily the happiest baby I know. The way your smile lights up everyone around you melts my heart. I’m a lucky mama to have the sweetest boys in the world in my life, in my home, in my heart. Every morning, you stretch and squirm. When we finally start talking to you–by that time, even your brother has usually joined us in the bed–you look around and as soon as you spot one of us–doesn’t matter which one–your grin fills up your face. You’re just so happy to realize that you’re still surrounded by these people who love you so much. And it makes me smile to know I’m surrounded by such love, too. I tell you, it’s a beautiful way to start my day.

Love,
Mama

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