Well, baby girl. When you were seven weeks old, back in January, I went to my first breastfeeding support group (no, I have no idea why I waited so long. I should have started going IMMEDIATELY). There was a woman there with a baby who was 8 months old. I looked at this baby, then looked at you, laying on your back on your blanket staring into the middle distance, moving one arm slowly in a desultory fashion, and I thought “My baby will clearly never be that old. Look at that giant child, sitting, grabbing, babbling! He has TEETH!” And now, here you are, you AND your two teeth, and I’m still shocked.
Month 8! You are BUSY BUSY BUSY. At five months you rolled, at six you sat, at seven you crawled, and now, at eight, you pull up on anything you can. In the last couple of days, you’ve even started trying to take a hand off of whatever you’re holding on to while you’re standing on your own two feet. This is a little terrifying for me, honestly, because cruising is next, and then WALKING.
You are no longer content to stay put on your nice, safe, soft playmat with the fancy organic cover that Granna and Pa got you. You’d rather range the house, and your crawling has gotten FAST. Sometimes I’ll turn around to find you all the way across two rooms from where I left you, gently putting your hand in the poor cat’s water bowl. “That’s Stinky’s,” we say, “but you can play with this,” presenting a yogurt tub which you find a poor substitute. Or you’re in the living room, somehow stuck with your butt under the couch, angrily protesting the indignity. Or you’re pulling up on the dining room chair. Or you’ve thrown yourself backwards from a sitting position and bonked your head on the floor instead of the aforementioned nice, soft mat. Or you’ve found a dust bunny and are trying to delicately pick it up between a thumb and forefinger. You are just so interested in everything!
Dada finally moved all of the liquor off of our liquor cart and replaced it with toys, of which you have more than a few. You like to stand holding onto it now, grabbing toy after toy. Today, I saw you trying to lift a knee onto the lower shelf to get to a toy that was just out of your reach. Are we going to have a climber on our hands soon, too?
You continue to grow like a… well, calling you a “weed” would imply that you’re long and lanky, which you most certainly are not. So, you continue to grow like the strong, healthy girl you are. I weighed you today on the unscientific scale at the breastfeeding support group (yes, now you are the resident ancient baby!) and it said you weigh 23 and a half pounds. People keep telling me that at some point, this growth will slow and you will “lengthen out,” but I’m not seeing it yet! You’re mostly in 18 month clothes already, and some of those are already too, erm, fitted for your ample thighs.
You sit with us at the table at every meal, now, eating your food so deliberately. Adorably, you telegraph when you’re planning to chew on something – you open your mouth as you reach, carefully, for each bit of food. When you miss, or your precisely selected blueberry falls out of your mouth, it’s heartbreaking, yet hilarious.
Your sleep is still not great, but has been slowly improving. The last couple of nights, you’ve given us the first 6-hour stretches of sleep we’ve had since before your sleep blew up at 4 months! At night, you sleep in the Baby Bjorn travel crib in our room. I love having you nearby, and am finally beginning to feel like I don’t have to check your breathing every thirty minutes while you sleep. Maybe someday I’ll feel up to moving you into your own room. Maybe.
You are communicating more and more! Not only do you happily babble “dadadada” and “bababababa”, you raise your arms to us when we bend to pick you up off the floor and you’re clearly recognizing your name. Sadly for me, “mamamama” seems to be reserved for when you’re upset. When we stop together to look in a mirror, you look back and forth between me and my reflection, clearly puzzled. At dinner, when we ask if you want a drink while doing the sign for “drink”, you happily flap your arms up and down and look right at your doidy cup. I don’t know how much you understand, but I’m getting the sneaking suspicion that it’s way more than I think.
I suppose we’ll find out just how much when you start to talk. That feels like a long way off, still, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned since you were born, it’s just how fast this all flies by.