Well, look at that, little miss. You’re one year old. I counted the days slowly for a while after you were born, not wanting to let time slip away from me in the sleep-deprived fog of those first few (or five or six or seven) months.
What I didn’t count? The countless hours I swayed you to sleep (while standing up, of course. You don’t like to be held while sitting down.) in the dark, singing and singing and PRAYING that you would just go to sleep. Countless times I nursed you: when it was sweet, when it was frustrating and hard, when — didn’t I JUST nurse you? and shouldn’t you be nursing less by now? and I wish you would just take formula.
I’m just being honest.
The countless tears I shed because my firstborn just, went to sleep, somehow, I don’t know, I never really had to try very hard with him, I guess he was an anomaly?; because I began to resent breastfeeding; because when will this season ever end, will she ever go to sleep without being swaddled or without the paci or without being fed to sleep or without me rocking her? Why won’t she take a bottle? Why do I feel so exhausted all the time?
(Jane sleeping with neither paci nor swaddle. Around eight and a half months. These things really do just happen. And of course, the sock, just off the right foot, because it’s always just the right foot.)
But then, the countless times you have surprised me. The sweet-as-sugar smiles, saying “Mama” and “Dada” early on, your spunk and spice, how incredibly easy it was to get you to eat pretty much ANYTHING.
The months I counted down til you would turn one year so I can wean you. When you refused milk anyway, practically with a wink and a smile, because somehow you know. You are so incredibly smart, my dear! Already shaking your head yes and no, being able to communicate pretty much anything you want.
The way you were totally out of it at your first birthday party, but for the second round you got into the cupcake just like we thought you would :)
How you are possibly born to be a ballerina/gymnast/acrobat??
Truth is, you are past one year, almost 13 months old, and you are developing at laser speed! You are saying many words (most of the time whispering them): mama, dada, nana, ck-ck (for cray cray), dog, book, dah-pah (diaper; and you point to your diaper changer when you wake up and its time to get changed!), up, down, fish (for your BELOVED goldfish), pah (for your equally beloved grapes), car, sock, shoe, and probably more that I’m forgetting. I am constantly amazed at how CLEAR a communicator you are. You point, you nod or shake your head, you sign for “more” “please” and “all done,” you turn away or look excited. I rarely have to guess what you are wanting! This will make the toddler phase just a bit easier on mama :)
You are not yet walking without holding on to anything — but this does not stop you from getting anywhere you want to go. You are trying to climb like your older brother (yikes) and you spend most of your time standing by the coffee table, play table or the TV stand.
You’ve got five teeth, currently going on six.
And oh my goodness, baby girl, you’ve still got those stunning faded-blue-jean eyes and that bright, lovely smile.
But this smile, the smile of sweet contentment, you reserve for your Daddy. Nobody can make you light up like he does!
And girl, you have got yourself some kind of love-obsession with FOOD. It is literally the quickest way to your heart.
And THIS… my new favorite part of every day with you. PUTTING YOU TO SLEEP IS SO EASY NOW. We turn on the sound machine, turn out the light, get your blanket and your head goes PLOP on my shoulder like this. I sing you Amazing Grace, and put you in your crib and you are out like a light. It’s funny how it happens so quickly. Yet so terribly slowly. The months and months and months of multiple night wakings, regressions, exhaustion, wondering when will this end, and I literally don’t even remember how but you sleep 12 straight hours a night without fail now. It just happened. It’s truly amazing.
Love you so much, my little one!! Happy Birthday Baby!