We need to talk. Now that you’re six months old there are a few things we need to get straight. Now is the time in your life when you should take naps. Real naps, longer than thirty minutes. You’ve been doing better in this department the last week. I can’t believe how much I can get done when you take a nap for 75 minutes. It’s incredible. I feel so productive. Also, you need to poop every day. It’s good for you. You bowels will thank you. I can’t really help you in that area, you’re just going to have to do that yourself. If not for your GI health, then for me, your worry-wart mother whose mind starts gravitating to ‘abdominal tumor’ when you skip a day. Thanks in advance.
Let’s talk about your eating habits, Sam. You are a piggy, and I say that with all sorts of love and affection. You’ve tried many different foods and haven’t shied away from any of them. Even squash, which I’ve figured out doesn’t agree with your tummy. It took me a few feedings to learn that lesson, which has resulted in some sleepless nights for both of us. The last time you ate it, you thrashed all night long, even when we went to the guest room for some serious 3 a.m. snuggle time. I felt horrible for you.
This has been a big month for you, Sam. You can sit up on your own. Now this is not to say that we can leave you on your own, you’re still pretty tippy. In fact, you like to play the Tip Game: you lean to one side and I say, “Tip!” It makes you smile. You fill my days with laughter, huge toothless smiles, and lots of the new gasping noises that have become your new favorite vocal trick.
More big news, Sam. You’re doing the army crawl. When we were in Gettysburg, we were taking a break between activities and giving you some tummy time. You were batting at your circus elephant toy, when all of a sudden, there was locomotion. Forward motion. Daddy and I froze, completely mesmerized, as we watched you pull yourself toward the elephant. When you finally reached it, I’ll admit it, I cried. It was incredible. The determination on your face was priceless. I wish we had it on video, but I wouldn’t have wanted to miss the moment running to get the camera. Every day, you’re getting faster and faster. The day of baby-proofing the house is close at hand.
I think all of the singing that Daddy and I do is starting to pay off. You are a music lover! When you are in your exersaucer, your favorite activity is banging the animal sounds box over and over until the songs come on. You freeze, listening to the song until it stops. Then it’s back to beating the poor plastic animals to hear the song again.
You love to play with Daddy. Some of your favorite games are “Up and Down” and “Bang the Floor.” Daddy lies on his tummy facing you on the floor. He pushes up on his hands, saying, “Up!” You mimic him, pushing up on your own little arms. Then Daddy says, “Down!” and falls down. You grin and do the same. “Bang the Floor” is pretty self-explanatory. Daddy bangs the floor, then you bang the floor. It’s very exciting.
I know I say this every month, Sam, but you are so smart. We were playing with your jack-in-the-box the other day. You watched the clown pop up and me shut the door the first time. The next time that clown popped up, the first thing you did was reach out and try to shut the door. You knew that was next. You are learning cause and effect. And it’s amazing to watch it happen.
You still prefer to fall asleep snuggled up with me than be alone in your crib. This makes for challenging nights. I would like to be in my own bed, child-free, whereas you would prefer to be in between us arms stretched out with a hand on each of our arms. While this is very endearing, I am trying so hard for you to learn to sleep in your crib. I lay you down, wrap your monkey blanket around your chin, rub your leg or your back, and say “Goodnight, Sam.” Then I climb into bed and listen to you snuffle around and kick the sides of the crib. After a while, when you’ve had enough alone time, thank you very much, you cry. Usually two loud sobs. When I come in, you’ve miraculously quit crying and are stretched up as far as your neck will go, trying to look over the side of the crib to see me as soon as I walk into the room. The degree of cuteness of this game varies depending on the time of night. Before two a.m., it’s waaaaay cuter.
Sam, you have been part of our lives for six months. Half of a year. That is unbelievable. Unbelievable because it’s only been six months, such a short time, and yet I can hardly remember what my life was like without you. It seems like yesterday that I was curled up on my side, rubbing your back through my belly, waiting for you. Now, every morning, when you wake up, I bring you into bed with me. One of my favorite things in the whole world is the moment when I lie down next to you and you curl toward me and stretch out your hand to me. We lie there, my big hand on your back, your little hand on my cheek, and let sleep descend onto us. Let the hours pass, I don’t care, I am snuggling with my son, my Sam.