Friday, July 18, 2008

Happy Month 9, Helen!

Dear Helen,

We have reached that monumental point where you have spent as much time outside my body as you spent inside. That, to me, is absolutely staggering. And just as your passage into the outside world was nothing short of incredible, so too, was this month.

After having some rough bouts with reflux keeping you awake at night, I took you to see a specialist. And, despite his nurse being a complete ass about me feeding you, he did seem to hit the right combo of meds. Almost instantly, your sleep improved to the point that now, when you wake up, you need little more than a couple of pats and a hug to go back to sleep. This pretty much moves you back to rock star status because man was it awful walking the halls or walking outside with you at night and knowing you were in rather severe pain. Your sleep was not so good on vacation, but perhaps you were just distressed to be in unfamiliar surroundings, and calling for me and Daddy regularly is probably a pretty smart maneuver on your part to make sure you haven't been left. Here's my promise to you, Helen, even if we leave you with grandparents at some point - we'll be back to pick you up within a couple of weeks. (If any grandparent is wondering how long that bruise on their forehead is going to take to heal after hitting their head on their computer monitor because they can't imagine keeping track of my two children for two consecutive weeks, you can pretend that last sentence said "week" or "few days" or whatever it is you think you can handle. But be prepared, at some point - the little people are coming without their mama!) In any case, the gastro doc thinks that by month 11 we'll be in the clear and can start reducing your medicine. Daddy and I are crossing out fingers that this is true.

What made this month so amazing? For starters, you decided that you would just go ahead and do something new so regularly that I have probably lost track of some nifty things. Your first two front teeth came in on June 15 and 17. Then, on June 21, you really made a big effort to crawl. But, rather than crawling, you face planted on the floor and that pretty much squelched that notion for a few days. On Father's day, you said "mama" for the first time - not as in, calling me - just as in putting a new sound together. And the following morning, it was the first syllable out of your mouth when you started yammering upon wake-up.

When we went to the baseball game, your brother was paralyzed with fear that fireworks might go off at any minute, so he sat pretty much clutching your dad, holding his ears. But you? You learned to clap - and now Helen, you clap ALL.THE.TIME. If someone isn't looking your way and you think you ought to be the center of their attention, you clap. You do this until they look at you at which point your face just lights up. By all accounts, you've made a lot of new friends in the past month with this trick.

And Helen, this milestone most certainly deserves a drum roll. You learned to roll from back to front. You've been rolling the other way since month four, but you had no desire to go the whole distance until this month. I have this feat recorded on video, but I can't figure out how to get that video to this blog, so that'll have to wait for another day.

You also learned to pull up. Quite frequently you are delusional enough to think you can walk so you try and let go of whatever object you are holding onto. This is not your smartest move, so far, but someday it will work.

You have learned to wave good-bye, and though your dad and au pair have been telling me for a few weeks that you say "bye bye" at the same time, I didn't get to hear it myself until a couple of days ago. So, you get credit for your first word. You also wave "hello" when I come into the room and that trick is fabulous. It feels completely ridiculous to write this, but I believe you also said "thank you". It happened on four different - completely appropriate - occasions. And, it happened in front of different people and each time I would respond "you're welcome" and they would swivel their heads around and say "it sure sounded like that's what she said" with complete disbelief. I wouldn't believe it myself if I hadn't heard it. No, the consonants weren't there, but it really did sound as close to thank you as possible for a kid your age. Just imagine how many sounds you might be able to say at this point had your hearing not been obscured by fluid much of your life.

You're starting to get to play more with Connor. You can ride in a wagon with him, and even ride the merry-go-round with him. You swim, you swing, and always, you smile. The two of you love playing music class together and someday, I hope you form a band. At this point, it would be one focusing mostly on percussion instruments, though occasionally one of you will strum the guitar or harp.

You are most definitely a mama's girl, and while your daddy may tell you no one likes a mama's girl, he's wrong. I do.


1 comment:

  1. Connor and Helen is you want to come for a couple weeks that is OK with me. (I think your Mother is just checking to see how quick we are reading the blog.)
    Grandpa Maag