My glasses always have fingerprints on them. Some are mine, from when I reach blindly for them in the middle of the night to get up and settle you back to sleep. Most, however, are yours, since your new favorite activity is to grab things. Anything. Put something in your reach and you’ll have it in your hands. Your wet and spitty hands. Hence the fingerprints. Case in point: yesterday we had linner (that’s the meal between lunch and dinner. Duh.) at Carol and Dave’s Roadhouse. I had you in my arms, facing away from me, getting ready to sit down at the table. Before my butt (Yes, butt. You’ll find that insanely funny in a few years.) hit the chair, you were already swinging my silverware around in your chubby little fist. Being the excellent mother that I am, I let you play with it, because it was wrapped in a paper napkin and the pointy end of the knife was only sticking out a little bit. I’m kidding. I did let you play with the napkin sans utensils and you seemed satisfied.
At that same restaurant, Daddy and I lamented over how it is such a hardship to have such an adorable, charming baby. We can’t take you anywhere without strangers fawning over you. All three of the servers at the restaurant kept coming over to play with you while we were eating. One went so far as to try to take out your pacifier so that she could see you smile. You wanted none of that and clamped down on it. I think you were challenging her to Just. Try. That. Again. Lady. Well, you taught her; she didn’t try it again. Actually, we love to take you places, not just so strangers can tell us how cute you are, but because you love to be a part of the action. You’re so quiet when we take you places, looking around at new things, prompting those same strangers to comment on how well-behaved you are. And you are a good baby, Sam.
You do keep telling us how you feel — and loudly — whether it be happy or sad. I think you have your daddy’s strong voice. Sometimes I listen to you in your crib, yelling, “Wah!” just because you can, not necessarily because you’re upset. I used to run into the nursery to comfort you, only to find you playing with your crib-side mirror and talking, loudly, to yourself. Now I wait until your talking turns to grunting before I go in to get you. I’m learning.
I think you’ve been frustrated a lot this month, Sam. You obviously want to be able to move around more than you can. If there’s a toy out of reach, you stretch and stretch to reach it and swim swim swim on your tummy, trying to propel yourself forward. After many failed attempts, and I give you loads of credit for making such a good effort, you grunt and grunt and sometimes cry until we bring the toy closer to you. Your body needs to catch up with your brain. It will come, Sam. You’ll be crawling before you (and I!) know it. Daddy and I have already started talking about where the breakables will live when you are able to get to them.
Sleeping has been more of a chore this month. You don’t want to go to sleep. You’d much rather be part of whatever the grown-ups are doing. Sometimes you fight sleep so long and get so overtired that you cry and cry and can’t settle down. It seems you’d rather not sleep in your crib, either. I think you’d be the happiest baby in the world if you could sleep in our bed every night. Sometimes when it’s really late at night and I am so tired and desperate for you to go to sleep, I will bring you in our bed and let you lie with me while I read. You will completely zonk out, sleeping through me launching myself over you out of the bed, picking you up and carrying you to the crib. As soon as your little body hits that crib, your eyes pop open and you kick and flail about like, “What the hell? We were sleeping in your bed!” It’s maddening, I tell you.
You’ve added new sounds to your babble repertoire. You can now say ‘buh’ and ‘bluh,’ and have added ‘gluh’ to your ‘g’ sounds. I’ve noticed that when you are “talking,” you have started to move your tongue forward in your mouth to see what that feels like. When you’ve figured that out, more and more sounds will be there at your disposal. It’s so hard to wait for real words. I can hardly wait.
I think the biggest thing this month is that you started solid foods. You had been watching us eat for weeks. There we were, mommy and daddy eating dinner and you, lying on your tummy on the floor, staring forlornly at our forks as they traveled from plate to mouth. I wanted to wait until you were six months old, but you were obviously ready to start. You open your mouth like a little bird when you’re eating, Sam. I don’t know when I will stop giggling when I feed you. The faces you make are hysterical. You also try to fold yourself in half to get closer to the spoon. It would be so much easier for you if you would stay upright, but you’d rather bring yourself to the spoon than wait for it to come to you. Daddy is much better at feeding you than I am. I put way too much food on the spoon and you end up wearing a lot of it. You don’t seem to mind.
This was the best month yet, Sam. Your little baby personality is so cute and charming. You love to smile and laugh (Daddy is your favorite comedian). You want to be in the middle of everything. My favorite new thing that you do is, when you’re trying to fall asleep, you put your hand on my cheek or grab my nose. And you stare and stare at me until your eyelids get so heavy and you finally fall asleep. It is those little hands that I will keep tucked away in my memory forever, the little quiet moments of being your mom that make my heart swell at just the thought of you.