Do infants miss the womb? He snuggles right up to sleep alongside. Sometimes he rams his head and chest into us while still asleep, seeking a closer connection.
The baby is finding his emotional range, living life more intensely. He is happy and shows it, and now also gets angry and shows it. Having a baby expands my own emotional range: more joy, love, pride, empathy, anxiety, fear.
Random thought: It's nice to have a baby in the house.
My start to a children's picture book: Chickens chickens cluck cluck / Ducks ducks quack quack. Here's a third line: Fire trucks fire trucks fire trucks trains.
The baby is rolling around a lot. New game: I lie next to the baby and lift my head with great effort and flop it down. It makes him laugh every time...does he remember when lifting his head was like lifting the weight of the world?
October 25: His first solid food is steamed broccoli.
October 26: Baby models a Hallowe'en costume (jack-o-lantern) on a daytime community television program, which will air on October 29. On the 31st we dress the baby in personalized green doctor's scrubs. My brother dresses up as 'wolfman' and comes over to give out candy to the neighbourhood kids.
It's autumn, my favourite season. I rake leaves while holding the baby in a carrier. His sweet pea knit hat, from maggiepiecreations, is almost mowed over, but rescued in time. We do outdoor renovations. We eat pumpkin pie. We celebrate Thanksgiving with food (and thanks) a few times over.
November 1: Simultaneous night-weaning and putting baby to sleep in his crib in his room. He starts sleeping through the night with minimal fuss immediately. Getting enough rest makes all the difference for me...I am more lucid during the day, and dream at night again.
I start reading doctor blogs and articles. I download well-baby doctor appointment checklists and kindergarden curriculum resources. I read about emotional regulation in infants. I learn about Montessori methodology.
We do the stay-at-home mom outings: play dates, play groups, park, library, mall (children's clothing stores), grocery store (treats & baby food), work visits, portrait studio, baby-friendly restaurants, mom-tot programs. At six months we are looking outward again and at return to work after this second half of maternity leave.
I shop for baby's first Christmas, such as a customizable Boynton book: "Are you a cow?" and sit him for a mall Santa picture & ornament. We book a family cruise for early 2011.
Our friends relate to him in their own ways. I catch a doctor friend observing with professional detachment, a prospective mom noting how 'good' he is, and his godmother holds him and accepts him like a gift every time. Our friends with three kids organize play around him safely, more attentive than we are of the risks their older kids pose in offering choking hazards.
November 29: Parents rely on and train their kids to be adaptable and tolerant...to be socialized and to accommodate their parents. We have a weekend where we push him by exposing him to lots of people and places, and have him in the carseat and stroller a long time. He finally protests vigorously Sunday night, when he is again in a carseat in the dark, late, and hungry. He has his first tantrum, which I break through by playing him his favourite song, "You lift me up," performed by Connie Talbot. He stops, breathes deeply, makes eye contact, and wraps his fingers around mine.
December 10: I obtain my provincial driver's license!
December 11: We go to my husband's company seasonal children's party: we ride carnival rides, receive an Eric Carle soft book which doubles as a crib bumper, reject Santa (again). It's too much for him - he falls asleep in the carrier, and our friends' kids look wistful watching him, especially the youngest, who was sleepy, and at 33 pounds can still be held but not too long.
December 13: Seven months old! We register in guardian-accompanied swimming and baby sign language.