Sunday, February 5, 2012

Nine Months Come and Gone

Watching the Super Bowl.

Audrey is nine months old today. Everybody together now... CRA-UH-AZEY.
How common is it, that the first few months drug on forever.... but the last six have FLOWN? Just me?
She is so stinking cute. But I'm sure you knew that.
She's just recently gotten really talkative. Everytime she takes off crawling she lets out her war cry, "Ah, da-da-da, nah-nah, pbbttt!" She's a super fast crawler now, to the point I have to run after her if I turn my head for a second. She's started climbing as well; chairs, bookshelves, couches. She's been a great stander for forever, seriously since she was born she wanted to stand. But NOW she can do it all on her own. She can hold steady on her own feet for a second then she chickens out and plops down on her bum. For Christmas she got a walker-stroller, she can cruise with that thing. She also scoots along the side of the couch and ottoman. Even our double french doors to the backyard, she'll scoot from side to side watching the doggies outside.
So, it's probably only a matter of time before she starts walking on her own.
*SIGH* I'm hoping since she's such a chicken right now it will postpone the inevitable. It already weirds me out to find her reaching up on the chair, with only one hand holding on.  For a such a tiny baby, she looks like such a big girl.

Weight wise, she's still tiny. She's just barely over 16 lbs. I just barely switched out her clothes to the 6-9 month size this week. And only because she had gotten too tall for the smaller size, not too fat by any means. Her shoes are still 0-3 months.
She's still not a great eater. Which probably contributes to the weight. She takes her bottle like a champ, but only if she wants it. She'll drink about 4-6 ounces at a time every few hours to equal about 30 ounces . She refuses baby food. She loves the puffs, pirate booty, goldfish, and animal crackers. She'll eat bread and french fries, sort of. She only sort of mashes it in her mouth, tasting it, and then spits it out. Which is what she also does with any other food I try to feed her; fruits, veggies, meats, pastas, etc. My mother-in-law did get her to drink a smoothie from her sippy cup, which she liked. Normally she won't drink any water or juice. Weird kid.
Her first tooth popped through yesterday. YAY!!!
She is in a pretty consistent nap and sleep schedule now. I lay her down typically at 10 AM, she'll sleep 1-2 hours, then again at 3PM and she'll sleep 2-3 hours. I guess that's not really all that consistent, but it's great for her. She goes to bed 7-8PM. She'll then wake up occasionally during the night, but typically I don't go get her. She'll cry a little bit, or just talk to herself and eventually goes back to sleep. She wakes up ready for the day 7-8AM. It's a great day if I can hold her off until 8:30AM.
I usually only work Monday and Tuesday. Which right now is tricky trying to find some consistent childcare. But then I have the rest of the week to hang out with baby girl. We do chores, she loves the vacuum. Go to lunch with friends, her bestie is probably Kyler. She loves big kids though. If we go anywhere where there are older kids running around, she'll chase them everywhere giggling. She desperately wants to be able to play with them. She doesn't even mind when they knock her over rough-housing. That might have something to do with her being used to two golden retriever siblings.
She'll sit and watch Sesame Street and Phineas and Ferb... for like two minutes. But anytime the P&F theme song comes on, or the Big Bang Theory theme, she'll drop everything she's doing and come crawling over to dance to the song. She loves music. Her idea of dancing is bouncing up and down on her bum and flapping her arms. She's got talent.
She loves the bath. Her daddy. She'll give big open mouth, fishy kisses. Peek-a-boo is her favorite game. Or peeking under the baby-gate at daddy. She'll tilt her head sideways and lean down just to giggle at him. She hasn't quite gotten the hang of saying 'hi' on the phone, she's more interested in eating it. Just like any new item or bit of dirt she finds. Straight to the mouth. She loves running errands. She'll only tolerate her car seat for so long, but loves riding in the cart like a big girl. She's never been very cuddly but has gotten to where after she finishes her bottle she'll just lay there with her round, full belly poking out and relax for a second. And then it's arch the back to get down and take off again.
I know everyone says this about their children, but I can't believe how big she's getting. Sometimes I really do miss my tiny little newborn. But she is developing such an amazing, curious, joyous personality... I can't help but love her. I miss her terribly when I'm away from her.
Kind of a turnaround from only six months ago. Which I suppose is a really good thing.
She's an amazing little girl. What's not to love?
Happy nine months baby girl!!! Don't worry, I'm already planning your birthday party.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My Life Through Others'

There are a few negative aspects of blogging. To me, blogging, is mostly about telling the stories. Being a storyteller is strangely enlightening. You tend to see the world in a different light. Reading some of my favorite authors' blogs can leave me feeling giddy and thankful. Both good things in this dreary world. Some of our stories are hard to tell. Sometimes they're painful to relive. Often the painful ones are more or less therapy for me, especially to reread at a later date and remember how strong I actually am. I survived that? I am awesome!
But sometimes those stories involve other people. Actually, most stories involve others to some extent. But sometimes their story overshadows your story. Sometimes telling their story would just belittle their experiences. Or insult their character in some fashion.
I don't wish to hurt anyone by telling my story. My story can include being angry at the action of others. Calling them out on it, doesn't necessarily correct the behavior. It only hurts feelings. Anonymity isn't an option on the internet. Especially, when half the people who read your blog are related to you.
My parents are now divorced.
This has been very painful to me. That story cannot be shared in the fullness because I love both my mother and my father very much. There are no sides. There was a marriage between two people. There is still a family. But the whole dynamic between these parties involved has changed... dramatically. Change is hard.
It came very suddenly, and played out quickly. Announced right before Thanksgiving in fact. Yay... holidays. *SARCASM* Then my grandfather passed away. My father, who was already grieving due to a different loss, now felt the emptiness of losing a parent. The next day, my little brother had to be admitted to the hospital, and was subsequently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.
Sucks to be him.
No, really. That poor kid. The same one who joined the Marine Corps, got in a horrific, fiery motor vehicle accident, which led to multiple surgeries and years of recovery. Had twin baby girls last fall, at the same time returning to school to support his now family of four. Yeah, sucks. That boy has the worst luck in the universe. Luckily, he caught it quickly enough to cause no long term damage. But his medical costs just went through the roof. And now the Corp will probably discharge him, they don't like liabilities like diabetics. Ouch!
See, makes my life look not all that bad. But then there's the part where it seems like I am playing off his story, or demeaning it in some way. Do you see my point?
Some stories cannot ever be really shared to their full extent. Because some people in your life are too important to ever really be able to explain accurately to the interweb. One day I hope to look back on this winter and wonder how I survived. It was a winter of tragedy. Most of it was spent grieving in some sense or the other: grieving with my siblings about our broken family, grieving with my individual parents and helping them find happiness, grieving with my sister-in-law regarding her sick husband and now unknown future, grieving with my extended family over the loss of our patriarch, and grieving alone about the weight all these troubles carry. Well, that last one is a little unfair. I have a very strong companion in Avery. He is my shoulder to grieve on, and my pulley. When I need to stand back up again, he does all the heavy lifting.
I have a lot to be grateful for: my immediate family is sound. The three of us are quite happy together. Audrey is a beautiful, happy little girl. She brings us both so much joy. Avery is doing so well in school, and is on track to finish his Master's research by the spring. Which means so much for our future! All happy, joyful things! My work has been a blessing in disguise. Our friends have been incredibly understanding. Extended family all still love us and are trying their best to do the right thing.
Is it sad that sometimes the sad stories overshadow all the good?