I’m sorry I don’t always remember to write you on your monthly “birthday.” Our daily life often gets filled with things other than mommy sitting at a computer. Or, if I do have to sit at the coputer, it’s for reasons unrelated to how awesome you are. We had a condo to sell, we had Christmas and other miscellaneous goings on. We had life. And now I’m starting to get why the poor second child seems to get the shaft when it comes to attention, photographs, baby books, monthly blogging.
Rest assured, though, your awesomeness is constantly on my mind. And I’ll try to make this one extra long to make up for the missing “eight.”
Recenly, you have been working hard on your leg strength and balance. You can stand up and put your hands over your head. You can stand up and clap. You can stand up and squat and stand up again, often while holding onto something stable, sometimes it’s entirely unnecessary to hold onto anything at all. Then you took a step. Then another. You do it a few times a day, but each time ultimately ends after a maximum of two steps and you’re back on your bottom and heading into your fast crawl.
And your crawl is most certainly fast. Even though it seems as though you’re always trying to push it, you keep your left knee down but dig in with your right toes like getting on the foot will give you that little turbo boost you need. And you cross the room in no time. You book it down the hallway like lightning. You flee from me once your diaper is off, you turn and look back, you crawl back in my direction a little, and then turn around and zoom, go, with the biggest grin on your face. You are so playful, and it drives me crazy, but also makes my heart explode.
You have finally learned to say “mama,” athough you only seem to do it when you’re really upset. You make sounds like, “deedledeedledee,” and have even sang along a little bit with the Christmas carols over the holiday season. Your repertoire of sounds is increasing little by little, and you’ve become much more expressive in your tone. Like I’m feeding you some food puree or other, if that spoon’s not to your mouth quickly enough, you bellow like a cave man. You’ve tried to say “banana,” and also “toast.”
Speaking of bananas, Grandpa eats one almost every day, and if he does it anywhere near you, you are wildly offended if he doesn’t share. You love food. You get so happy to try to pick up the broken bits of cheerios, which mostly end up on your lap, but I appreciate your enthusiasm because it occupies you while the rest of us take the opportunity to eat without your demands to be spoon fed. You like to play and make silly noises, especially while eating, which also occasionally leads to sprays of apples or bananas through the air, and who knows where it all lands in the end.
You love to explore new things and places. You still want to do all the things your big brother does, and most of the time, he’s happy to include you. You have gotten really good at peek-a-boo, and so excited by the game the smiles and squeals couldn’t be any bigger or louder if you tried. You and Michael often wrestle with each other, and he’s really good and gentle with you. He loves to make you laugh almost as much as we do. But you also get into the Legos and sometimes interfere with the construction of the latest robot or vehicle. If Daddy and Michael are working on some bigger projects with some smaller bricks, they’ll close themselves in Michael’s bedroom and you’ll race down the hall after them to yell and hit the door. You look at me like how dare they exclude you from their thing. And I can’t help but laugh. It’s only the beginning.
We play the Wii from time to time, and you grab a controller of your own or an accessory or a remote and wave it around, thinking you’re helping. And for the time being, you’re content with that. I know you’ll be mad when you realize you’re not actually influencing the guys on the television. And I know you can’t wait for your own Lego time. You are so strong, so mature, so anxious to play the big kid games, to do the grown-up things, sometimes I forget how small you still are. That is, until I have you curled up in my lap, nursing you to sleep. Your knees bend against me, and your hand gently strokes the mole on my chest or pulls at your ear. Your fingers are still so small and soft. Your eyelashes so delicate resting on your smooth baby cheek.
I love to see how much your world is expanding every day. And I love to see your four teeth when you see me and smile like maybe I still could be that whole world for you, too, somtimes. You are amazing. You are awesome. Trust me, I’m noticing daily. I’m enjoying you immensely. So much that it’s a shame to pull myself away in order to sit here and write it.
I love you so much! I wish I had more time to share all the joy and laughter you bring to this little family of ours. You’re crazy and enthusiastic. You are sweet and loving. You are confident and demanding. You are incredible, and I’m lucky to be here with you, playing, teaching, guiding and watching you grow in your own special way.