Meredith: 7 Months

Sweet Meredith,

You’ve changed so much this month. You are sitting up like a pro now. It started a couple weeks ago, all on one day. It was like you decided it was something you could do, and then it was. I love your determination and intensity, little child.

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Not only do you sit up, I feel like you’re very close to some sort of mobility. That determination gets your focus settled on something out of reach and you just work and work. I’m always surprised just how far this reach takes you and how well you can right yourself again if you’ve gone for something while sitting. It doesn’t always work, though, and the other day we heard you crying big sad tears and found you on your face between your splayed-out legs. You’d been reaching for something in front of you and you got farther than you could recover from.

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It’s mental growth that I’ve been amazed at this month. Your interaction with people is so much fun to see. You thrive on it. Last night we got back from nine days of traveling and it’s going to be tough for you to adjust to having a smaller kingdom with only three people regularly available for you to amuse yourself with. Even at your fussy moments – which were few and far between since you were feasting on so much love from all directions – you would calm down if a stranger caught your eye. You fussed so much on the planes yesterday but every time a nearby passenger smiled at you, you’d smile right back. Your public.

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You had the time of your life last weekend when we spent four days with dear friends of mine in Phoenix. They have four little kids including a darling five year old girl who held you quite nearly every waking moment of every day. I honestly don’t know which of you enjoyed it more.

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You are crazy about your brother. You two just look at each other and belly laugh. I was so worried in the early days of your life that I’d bit off more than we could chew and you’d each be the worse for it, and my mantra was an interesting article I’d read reflecting on the unsurpassable gift a sibling is. In only a few short months it’s proven true and I can only imagine what kinds of nonsense you two are going to lead each other into in years to come.

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Your favorite toys right now are the tiny bear that hangs from your bassinet and a couple random rattles. Your favorite places are the activity center we got handed down from our buddy Julian last month for play and your way-too-small bassinet for sleep. You’d much rather snuggle in there than sprawl out in your crib.

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But none of that stuff specifically geared towards babies is as good as whatever Mommy & Jacob are busy with at any moment, and if we’re reading a story it’s little use offering you something to occupy your hands because you are completely sold on getting that book in your mouth.

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Everything goes in your mouth, including my dear Nonnie’s hands. We spent three days with her this week out in California and for five silly minutes we were sitting on the Newport Beach Pier and you were just nomming on her tasty fingers.

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It was so special to see you with my Nonnie – your Nonnie, too. I didn’t have high hopes that it would ever become a reality and then there you were in her arms and it brought me back to my childhood. When I was little I was fascinated with her hands, too, and I remember endless Sunday church services sitting next to her spinning her wedding ring around.

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But nothing is good enough for chewing on when the rest of us are eating food. Somehow you know food is food and you won’t be silenced until you are holding a piece. You took down a couple pizza crusts in one sitting last week, and yesterday we pacified you with the rind of a large slice of honeydew. How are you so good at this already!?

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I’ve been musing on how to be a good mommy to you since you are so obviously a people person. I am totally sold on your learning to amuse yourself and to that end I frequently leave you fussing alone where I’ve left you to play for what must seem like eternity to you. But it’s so clearly your personality to thrive on interaction.

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So from now on when we go shopping Jacob gets the big car in front of the cart so you can sit right up in front by me. (In the past you’ve had to ride behind Jacob, your seat in the main basket of the cart.) I remember lots of giggly shopping trips with Jacob and it was fun today to see you filling his shoes – and then some! I want to indulge your love for people and teach you how to use it well so you can cultivate it into a sweet, giving, outward-looking spirit that will bless everyone you meet.

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And speaking of shopping, this might be the funniest story from this month: I was dashing out for some errands one day and forgot something in the house. I left you just inside the door with my purse while I went to get it and when I came back there you were, holding my purse handle looking at me like “Mom, I’m ready to go shopping!”

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You’re asleep in your bassinet right now and I’m sitting here wondering how long that will last. You are religious about having three naps, so if you only get two before bedtime you usually wake up a couple hours into the night and yell for some fun. (You fill our lives with so much drama!) This week is the end of your nocturnal reign of terror. Starting tomorrow night you will be in your crib in the nursery and not upstairs with us. Your mommy is on the warpath. Just thought you should know.

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I owe you a quick apology before my thoughts on the month are complete. Your most common nickname became Princess Pants sometime or other. So, sorry about that.

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I love you.

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