Posted by: emjb | April 16, 2006

5 Months

Dear Nathan,

When you sleep on your belly in your onesie, arms tucked underneath and legs sprawled behind, you are the cutest baby-shaped sausage I ever saw. I’m a little scared at your reasons for storing all this extra pudge in your legs, because to use it up you’re going to have to be the world’s first 5 foot toddler. Not that it would surprise me. I just hope we can find something for you to wear.

Belly-sleeping is definitely the big accomplishment this month. I expected it to be the arrival of your first tooth, but the little bastard won’t pop all the way, just stays beneath the surface making you miserable. Though it’s always obvious your default setting is Happy; the minute your pain subsides or I growl into your belly, you giggle and smile. Ticklishness is new this month too.

I’m not sure how far away crawling is. Put you down on a blanket on your back and you flop around like a fish, over to your belly. Then you stick your rump in the air and wave it around, frantically trying to roll back over. Or you hoist up on your arms and end up going backwards. All the while making loud growly grunts of effort. But if you see me or Mamaw or Gramps or Daddy come in, you look up and smile like the little flirt you are. When you get tired, you flop your head down and stick your fingers back in your mouth, and sigh a sad little sigh, that is so cute, it hurts.

When I look in your eyes, there’s definitely someone home in there, someone curious and funny and flirtatious. Someone stubborn enough to spend all day waggling his butt into the air in the hopes of getting somewhere at last. I don’t know if you have dreams yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised, given the little squeaks and even cries you give out in your sleep sometimes. You never wake up all the way, though. In fact, you sleep more now this month than ever, mostly because your desperate parents finally decided to let you fuss at bedtime…and you passed out after 10 minutes. Boy did we feel stupid for thinking it would be so hard. But hey, you’re the first and maybe only, so we have to make all our mistakes with you. And you’ve made up for it by developing a hard rule of No Sleeping Past 7AM. Just to make sure we didn’t lose all our sleep deprivation.

You are developing that particular passionate baby attachment to Mama that all babies, particularly little boys, go through. It’s a bit disconcerting to be wooed so relentlessly. You save your biggest adoring eyes, your best giggles, your drooliest smiles, for me, and who can resist that? I know it won’t last forever, but I understand now why it’s sad when it does go away. It’s so flattering, the way you light up the minute you see me, or turn your head when I speak from the other side of the room. I know it’s just a survival mechanism, really, but it’s nice all the same, being adored so uncritically. It makes being with you a little hit of sunshine on even the worst days.

It’s a lot of power, being the center of someone’s world. I hope I don’t let you down. At least not until it’s time for you to become a surly teenager. When that day comes, feel free to roll your eyes at me as I sniffle away a little tear, ok? It’ll just be your Mom, acting weird again like old people do.


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