You have changed so much this month. You are learning like mad. It’s been amazing to watch you learn to use your eyes. You’ve gone from barely able to see to focusing and tracking objects this month, and it’s clear that you know our faces. Taking you for a walk in your stroller the other night was fun, because you just followed everything we passed. It’s amazing to think that with every new adventure you’re going to discover that the world is even bigger than you thought.
Your favorite things are still stark contrasts and bright light. You love to stare out windows or into dark closets and your three favorite things in the house are the big clock on the dining room wall, the bow & arrow above your changing table, and Gramma’s Africa paintings on the blue living room wall.
You’ve learned to smile in the last couple weeks, too, and your first big smile is a moment we’ll never forget. You were throwing a fit at bedtime and suddenly you saw your daddy and seemed to forget all about your crying and gave him this goofy, mouth-wide-open grin. We laughed so hard.
Your current lesson is night time, and in the past week you’ve consistently slept at night and stayed up during the day. Mommy couldn’t be happier! Not only that, you’re only eating once in the middle of the night now and going right back to sleep. Last weekend we started a bedtime ritual and a morning ritual, and I think you’re getting the hang of it. You get a bath every night which you just LOVE, and then jammies and Goodnight Moon and a bedtime prayer and song with the blinds drawn to make the room dark. You almost never cry on your way to sleep. In the morning I open the blinds and talk to you lots and play and put on your day clothes and every day you are more and more generous with the smiles and even a laugh or too – you’re clearly happy to see me!
You are an easy kid and such a delight. I’m doing everything I can to “learn” you right now, since I know that will be more successful than trying to teach you at this point. One thing I’m glad I’ve learned is how to tell when you’re tired. When you’re having a good day you never fuss unless you want to be put down for a nap and then as soon as you are in your crib you drift peacefully off to sleep. I am a spoiled and lucky Mommy, no doubt, and I’m enjoying the freedom of your nap times to work on other things.
It’s a challenge to love you every day as the sweet little boy you are. Sure, you are a sinner and you make that abundantly obvious when you throw a tantrum, turn purple, and stop breathing. But you are a dear little guy, and what’s important to remember is that you are a person. When life is a never ending cycle of diapers and meals and baths and fussing it’s easy to think of you as another one of my projects – another thing that has to get done. I am praying that God will always give me the grace to remember that you are not a project. You are a deep, complex, unique, needy soul and I want to love you with the dignity and respect you deserve and never write you off as an object that I must attend to.
To this end, I talk to you a lot. I don’t know how much you can understand, so I figure it can’t hurt. One of your aunts who visited said I talk to you a lot more than they’re used to hearing moms talk to babies. But you are my buddy and we hang out all day long and I love telling you all about everything and asking you silly questions and calling you names. Also, I apologize in advance if I ever sing one of my silly baby songs to you when you’re 12 years old.
You’ve brought us so much joy this month and we are excited for what is just around the corner. Keep working on that smile, because your two dimples are beyond wonderful.
I love you,
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