Thursday, January 31, 2008

15 months

I call this picture "No I'm NOT getting into something I shouldn't be getting into!"

Baby boy is 15 months old today, and I am elated to finally - FINALLY - report that he is walking. Not 100% full time, but at least half of his on-the-go movement is walking. It's adorable, really - I liken him to Frankenstein, complete with the waving hands in the air. It happened suddenly, almost overnight, and tonight he was looking as though he's been doing it for months, even almost running a few times. Yep - he's growing up way too fast.

He can tell you what sounds a cat, snake, giraffe (don't ask), cow, and sheep make. He still tells the downstairs dog (and oftentimes the downstairs child) to be quiet when he can hear them. He'll say "beep beep" when he hears a car horn or the microwave beep. He says "beekaball" for basketball, and "beeball" for baseball. He loves to "bow," or bounce - on the bed, on the couch...on the floor. He loves going to the local children's museum (for ages 1-4) and "touring" the countries, playing the music, playing in the pretend kitchen, garden, and farm stand...he loves to explore, loves to learn, and loves to show off any new acquired skill.

He will announce when he has to go/has gone pee pee and caca, and if he's oh-so-lucky to be in the bathroom with Mama when she has to go, loves to wave and say "bye bye, pee pee" as the toilet swishes.

He can pick out the letters O, Q, B, and the number 8 out of his bath time letter/number bath toys. He still loves to read/being read to. He loves to climb on anything - he has even tried climbing the cats on a few occasions - and I'm sure he'll love that our new home has an actual staircase that he can climb up and down.

He loves to give kisses and to snuggle and hug - melts my heart every time he makes his kissy noises. He gets more and more loving with my pregnant belly every time (please, God, let this be a sign that they'll have a good relationship).

He has begun those awful boy noises. Grunting, car noises, Cookie Monster noises...oy. All day. ALL DAY. He is definitely all boy.

After being a bit concerned after his last doctor's appointment, I type this entry with a great sense of pride for all that he has accomplished, and with a bit of a heavy heart at just how quickly time is passing. Slow dow, time...just a little.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Uh oh

Is it normal for the first thing you feel when you find out the sex of your child to be unmistakable fear? Because that's what I felt today. A distinct feeling of, "I'm sorry, what?" In the short drive home from the doctor I was somehow able to play out the next 30 years in my mind...and it left me terrified. If ever there was a time I doubted my ability to mother, this is it.

In other news, XL maternity underwear. Have you seen 'em? I'm sure they'd be adequate to sail a boat around the world. Once upon a time I could comfortably wear a size medium. Then I got pregnant the first time, and the size went to a large. Today I put on my very first pair of granny panties XL maternity underwear and was mortified. About as unsexy as you can get. My secret? I love them. Super comfy. Everyone should wear them.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


When did I become a ma'am? At what point do you cross over from being called miss in the grocery stores and Panera by the nice young men to the dreaded ma'am? Is it because I have a kid on my hip? Because I'm hugely pregnant? Because I seem, virtually overnight, to have aged about 15 years when I wasn't looking? Really, I appreciate the attempt at being polite, especially when so many people who work those types of jobs are bitter about the state of their lives (or they're nice looking young college men) but if you really want to stoke my ego, get a tip, prevent me from asking you to bag my groceries in paper bags...just call me miss. Please. Forget the bun in my hair that's hanging halfway down my head, forget the fact that I have no makeup on and my glasses are crooked, and forget that I probably haven't showered in 2 or 3 days - I'm a mom. I've earned the right to go out in public like that. You will, somday, too. Unless you're one of those college men. Then be damn sure to be nice to your wife when it, inevitably, happens to her.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

What am I, bottled water?

The hubs was very recently told that I need to be filtered. This from someone who fits the old adage "those who live in glass houses ought not to throw stones." I never saw such a glass house!

I prefer filtered water, myself. SmartWater, Poland Spring...those will suffice. Filtered coffee, obviously, is much easier on the palate than unfiltered. But a filtered me? Nah. Now where's the fun in that?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Boredom ensues

It's amazing how little there is to do on a cold, wintry day in NYS on the first weekend since you've ditched your cable. I could read, but I don't have anything lying around that I haven't already read at least twice. I could clean, but since we're leaving this hole in 3 weeks I don't really see a point. I could pack, but we have no boxes yet.

My mom came to visit for the day yesterday. It's fun to watch the baby interact with her - it took him a bit to warm up to her since he's so used to seeing her on "her turf" and not his, but once he did he was cute, almost as if he were flirting. I love to sit back and watch him interact with other people. He's only really ever around us (me, mostly), so I'm glad to see that he's able to warm up fairly quickly to others. He knows and loves his Gran, obviously, but it still makes me happy to see him interacting positively with someone other than us.

Even this blog is boring today.

It's officially 4 months until Gumdrop is due. Four months yesterday, actually. Time is certainly flying. Once we've moved we'll slowly work on getting his/her bedroom ready. I've already started picking up some neutral clothing but nothing for the nursery yet. I'm still in a bit of denial that I'll have two in cribs. Cribs and diapers. Diapers and cribs and bibs, oh my.

What else? My latest obsession is with trying to live a quasi-green life. Not green as in we're-rolling-in-dough, although that would be nice. But green as in using vinegar to clean instead of Windex and trying to eliminate some unnecessary things from our cable. Oh God, how I mourn the loss of my digital cable and DVR. But it's saving us a disgusting amount of money, saving electricity, and forcing me to do something else in the afternoons while the baby sleeps.

I omitted the original final paragraph at the request of my husband who asked me to play nice about our move. So all I will say is that we're moving to a fabulous home in the 'burbs and I couldn't be happier. :)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

15 months

The entire time I was pregnant with my son, I questioned whether or not I was really cut out to be someone's mother. I didn't think I had the heart, the ability, or the personality to raise a child who would grow up feeling loved, nurtured, and protected. I had myself convinced of this, up until the very moment he was placed in my arms for the first time. After that, I knew. I knew that all of my worrying had been for naught. In fact, I was convinced that I was put on this earth to be a mother - to be THIS baby boy's mother. For so long I had struggled with wanting to know what my role in this lifetime was supposed to be, and on that day in that recovery room my wondering stopped. I made a silent vow to that baby in those first few precious moments to love him more than anyone else in the world, to protect him, to teach him, to give him the best life possible.

So today, at his 15-month checkup, imagine my surprise when the doctor told us that he's currently maturing a bit slowly. He has gone from the 65th and 70th percentiles for weight and growth to the 25th percentile for both. His soft spot is still open. His speech apparently isn't what it should be (?), and he's still not walking independently. He communicates with us - he does talk, but apparently the lack of phonetecism is something that the doctor wants us to keep an eye on. Walking is officially a 15-month milestone, and when the doctor asked if the baby was running all over, I imagine I had a bit of the deer-in-the-headlights look on my face, and I told him that, while the baby does take 6 or 7 or 8 steps on his own, he's still primarily crawling and not walking independently. So we're keeping an eye on things.

Mother guilt being what it is, in all its infinite, never-ending, round-the-clock glory, set in and immediately made me place the blame on myself. What in the world have I done wrong? I've always considered myself a fairly intelligent woman - am I not smart enough to teach my son correctly? From day one I've interacted with him as though he were my peer - always carrying on conversations - NEVER doing the baby-talk thing (drives me nuts when people try to baby talk to him even now - he looks at them like they're stupid)...we've read to him since he was 2 months old. I don't know a mom who gets down on the floor and plays with her child more than I have and still do. We read almost constantly during the day. Plunk my kid down in front of the television at 15 months old? Never. Not in this house. We value human interaction in this family, and he has never shown any kind of interest in the television, anyway. Is it because I didn't breastfeed beyond 3 months? My body physically stopped producing milk due to a thyroid disorder - that one wasn't my call, and to this day it kills me to think about the physical and emotional benefits that were lost.

I'm at a loss. If, at his 18-month checkup, things haven't progressed much, then, I imagine, the real concern will set in. I don't know what else I can possibly do. Is it because he doesn't have a great deal of interaction with other kids? Well, isn't it that way for most only children who aren't daycare babies? We don't have friends or acquaintances here with children anywhere near the same age group as my son, and playgroups seem to be nonexistent in our area.

Please don't excuse my worries for anything other than concern over his well-being. I'm not the kind of mother who will be devastated if her son winds up having some kind of delay because it's a burden, or it's embarassing, or it's extra work or money for her - and I have met people like that and frankly, they make me ill. I don't want him having struggles and a hard time growing up because he might wind up being a little behind his friends. I don't want kids making fun of him. Kids are awfully cruel, and I'd hate for my baby to be the punchline of someone's joke, the object of someone else's pointed finger.

If they day hadn't started off swimmingly enough, we find out that he has a symptom or two of certain metabolic disorders and diabetes. So now I'm trying to collect a urine sample from a child still in diapers. Imagine a codpiece - this is what the specimen collector looks like. It's very sticky and adheres to his boy parts - ouch - and is too small to collect anything. So that's been fun. The doctor assures us there's nothing to worry about, but wants to run the tests just to be cautious. So waiting for that news will be joyous.

I'm sure that I'm just being a typical worried mom. I'm sure he'll catch up to where he's supposed to be. He's beautiful, he's healthy, he's so much fun to be around, and most importantly, he's loved and he knows he's loved.

I wonder when Motherhood: The Manual will be published?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The darndest things

As the annoying little yapper downstairs began yet another one of its non-stop bark-fests (this is the same dog, we were assured prior to signing the lease, that NEVER barked), my sweet, genius 14-month old looked at the front door, threw up his hands, and said, "Be quiet!" That's my boy!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Address change

To my regulars -

I'm trying to figure out if I can change the web address for this blog without having to lose my previous posts. If, one day, you try to get here and my blog seems to have disappeared, fear not - just use Google and search for "antifungal cream for worrywarts," and you'll hopefully be lead to the new address. Hopefully.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Why the hell won't my kid sleep? We've tried everything. Now he's not sleeping during the day, either. There is nothing wrong with him (unless I look at this as a red flag for autism, which I'm really trying hard not to do).

He. Just. Won't. Sleep.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year; 14 months

The first day of the new year. 2008. I wish I had something prophetic to write about, something filled with wit and wisdom...but alas, I'm sick and it's early, and my brain isn't willing to cooperate.

I'm trying to decide if I should have a resolution or two. I can't make the overused, underdone resolution of losing weight - I have a fetus to grow. I could do the whole "I'm going to stop swearing" thing - but whenever I've done that I've let the f-bomb slip several times before lunch, and really, what's the fun in having a completely clean mouth? If I feel the need to clean it up I'll brush my teeth and chew some Orbit. I could say that I'm going to try to become a better Christian, leading me to become a better wife and mother, but even after 12 years of being brainwashed attending a private Catholic school, I'm not sure I really know how to go about that.

I could resolve to be the hell out of this apartment and into a nice neighborhood by the time the baby comes. I could resolve not to keep my mouth shut, just as a way of "keeping the peace," when people are phony and rude to my family.

I could do the dishes more often.

I've never really understood why people make resolutions. I get the whole "new year, new you" and starting fresh thing, but what is it about a date on a calendar that suddenly propels people into wanting to better themselves? Shouldn't we want to one-up ourselves each and every day?

14 months
How did my baby come to be 14 months old? How has he gone, seemingly overnight, from an infant who fit snuggly in the crook of my arm to this big pile of kid...who still likes to snuggle, but who doesn't fit quite as well? Surely I must be experiencing some kind of back-to-the-future phenomenon, and I'm only here in this moment for a short period of time. No? Well, it was worth a shot.

Progress is being made with walking. I thought for sure he'd do it for real at my parents' home during Christmas, but nothing more than 5 or 6 steps at a time. What have I been saying? Any day now!

Somehow, without our telling him, he has learned that there is a baby in my stomach. For the past few days he has become obsessed with lifting my shirt enough to see my stomach, pat my belly, blow it a kiss, and say "baby." I was floored the first time he did this. Neither my husband nor I ever explained to him or directly told him that there's a baby in there; it's a concept we figured he'd not quite be able to grasp yet. But in some odd, sibling/baby-intellect sort of way, he just knows. I find solace in that - I hope it's a sign of what will be a close relationship bewteen the two of them. Not incest-close, but friendship/protection/love-close. Just thought I'd clarify.

The word list is slowly growing. Mama, daddy, kitty, big, ball, banana, caca, car, Elmo (God help me), big caca (for the really gross diapers), uh-oh, book, meow, oh boy, oh man, good boy, bocky - his version of "broccoli," and I'm sure there one or two more that I've forgotten. Most days, he really does seem quite intelligent. I've witnessed or heard kids twice his age who can barely mumble something that slightly resembles a groan. Then there are his weird days - he'll crawl along and suddenly stop to strike a downward dog position, hold it for 30 seconds, and then sit up and shake his head and wobble around because, I'm assuming, he has made himself dizzy. He makes us laugh, that's for sure.

He loves to splash in the tub like a big boy. He has already become a picky eater - no leftovers, please. He growls every time he sees Cookie Monster in the store. He shows no interest in watching television, thank goodness. He'd rather be active. He has quite the personality, and I can definitely see both the Irish and Italian tempers already. I love him to pieces - I *still* don't know how it's going to be possible to love another one this much!