Monday, October 12, 2009
Letter to a 6-Month-Old Mover and Shaker
Dear Olivia (AKA Livi, Tootsie, Meatball, Chunka-Munka),
The ultrasounds were deceiving. You were supposed to be the quiet one, the mellow baby. You kept up the ruse the first couple of weeks of your life. While Sophia screamed, you quietly observed, taking it all in. Only now do I realize that you were conserving your energy, saving it and plotting for the day that you were mobile. One day, around 3 months old, you realized that you could stand up on our laps. At this moment in your short life, you decided that you were no longer a baby. Gone were the days of cuddling you sweetly. You wanted to stand up! And jump jump jump! In the blink of an eye you were focused solely on locomotion, rolling around the house, crawling backwards, wreaking havoc as you went.
You now come with a warning, when someone scoops you up because you are grinning that irresistible gummy grin of yours, or when they place their baby down near you. I am obliged to give them the heads up “Be careful. She pinches.” And you DO, little one. You pinch with gleeful abandon: the happier you are the harder you pinch- me, your sis, Grandma Jo, none of us can escape your enthusiastic talons. The only thing I think you like to do more than pinch is eat. As soon as someone in the vicinity picks up a spoon, you start with your demands of “Ummmmmmm. UMMMMMMM!” Although you have soundly rejected green beans and were pretty luke warm on avocado, you devour your oatmeal, peaches, sweet potatoes, squash, and pears with voracity. It’s no wonder that you are positively off the charts growth-wise, and something about your chubbiness makes me so proud.
At 6 months, I am still nursing you to sleep at night. I can’t tell you how much I treasure these moments of stillness, how, when you are not a blur streaking past me I take the time to really marvel at you. I stroke your hair, feel your breath, listen to those contented baby murmurs, and swell with love for you. After a chaotic day of trying to save you from yourself, I relish the time spent in rocking chair in your dim nursery. These moments, too, seem finite. More and more often I put you in the crib awake and you fall asleep all by yourself. But the rush, the absolute joy of hearing you coo and squeal through the monitor and going in to get you out of the crib after a nap, to be greeted by the most enthusiastic of grins when you catch sight of your adoring mama, is beyond compare.
Happy 6 months, my busy girl. I love your intensity. Don’t ever lose it.