The Other Side: Notes on the Seventh Month

I am the parent of a seven month old child. This wallops me every time I think about it.

My seven month old child. B and I commonly refer to the summer months as “when she was a baby.” She’s clearly a middle schooler now that it’s fall.

Babies are a bigger deal than we give them credit for. Things we take for granted – feeding ourselves, our ability to put ourselves back to sleep when we wake in the middle of the night, and spacial awareness – are things that pose big challenges to them every day. Luckily, since they haven’t acquired the concept of giving up, they just keep on keepin’ on until they master these skills. It’s pretty admirable. Sometimes I wish I were a baby because I’d be learning new stuff every day. I’m not doing NaNoWriMo (I’m doing NaNoWriDecade), but if I told C to, she’d probably crank out a book. No promises that it would be all that good, but she’d give it the ol’ college try.

So! On with C’s newly acquired skills. This may be a long post. Heh.

First off, crawling. Crawling like a mofo. But you know this. C has places to go and dust bunnies to ingest, so she’s a busy girl. She can also sit up by herself completely unassisted.

The monster under the crib.

Napping has gotten a lot better. Although there are no hard and fast times that she will conk out each day, she has improved about 1000% in falling asleep for naps without the bottle. I will just put her in her swing – and POOF! – within about eight minutes she will usually fall asleep all by herself. (Running the vacuum doesn’t hurt, though). I’m calling Harvard on this one. She had a bit of sleep regression during the last week of October with the onset of all her new skills.

Since she was wearing a brown boyish onesie, I decided to put a ribbon on her head so people would know she was a girl when we went out. So when we took the ribbon off, her hair did this. LOL.

It was bound to happen eventually, but it looks like she has finally gotten sick. This is likely because she puts everything in her mouth and sucks her thumb*. But this morning when I was changing her, I noticed little splotches all over her torso. Thankfully, Ashley posted last month about similar symptoms in her daughter Sonia, and so I’m pretty sure C has come down with Roseola. Pretty yuck, but the moral to this whole story is that it pays to read blogs of people whose kids are a couple steps ahead of yours because when your kid finally comes down with something, you freak out a lot less. She’ll be OK.

*I was considering giving the thumb sucking item its own whole paragraph, not because it troubles me, but because it’s so cute. It’s the little things.

I may have written about this in the past, but I’m now going officially on the record saying that breastfeeding proper is pretty much over. She will nurse for about 15 minutes in the morning, but lately she’s been taking to biting and this is no bueno. I pump throughout the day so she is still getting breastmilk, but I’m not going to lie: I’m kind of over it. Since we’ve made it this long, though, I figure we’ll go for five more months. Famous last words. She’s a big fan of eating otherwise, although she’s not really at the point yet where she can feed herself her little baby crackers. She mostly just holds them in her fists where they then melt. I usually find them still in her hands 30 minutes later. Yum.

Her babbling is getting more and more defined each day. I love to hear her little coos and da-da-DAs. No ma-ma-MAs yet. She’s making me hold out. That’s OK, though. We have an understanding.

She loves her routines and we do too, but she really enjoys being out and about with us. We went to Raleigh last weekend to meet up with Kelly from Excitement on the Side and her kids*, and she just hung out in B’s lap the entire time and enjoyed herself. At some point, she became a baby who could do this! It’s no small thing.

*There will be a post or seven about this. The hangoutage was as awesome as you think.

A baby after her parents’ hearts

Happy seven months to our sweet girl! We love her so, so much. I could think of a more pithy and poetic way to describe my love for her but she’s exhausted me too much. So let’s just reduce it down:

Mommy=smitten

Baby=perfect

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50 comments

  1. This is such a great post!

    I can only imagine how honored your child must feel when she reads all this when she’s 18!

    My son is two now and he’s really turning into a small human-being, he’s not a baby anymore! Just imagine the ramblings and the not giving up of a baby, wrapped in a tiny person that can jump, climb and run. Oh, and dance (!)

    Children are awesome, but what makes me really happy to see is that there are still people out there that love their children. Cause I promise you, it’s not such an obvious thing anymore. Where I live, children are either considered annoying and a burden or a toy – I have it now, but don’t know what to do with it, so let’s put it with a nanny 16 hours a day.

    Awesome post. C ROCKS!

    1. Thanks, Daan. I really look forward to her reading these someday. I put way more energy and thought into these developmental blog posts about her than I put into her baby book, so hopefully she’ll appreciate them.

      I also don’t get it when people view their kids as a hassle and little people who just need to be dealt with. Sure, they’re hard sometimes, but our imperative as parents is to give them the love and nurturing that they may never get elsewhere. There’s a lot of complexity in the parent/child relationship, but I hope that amidst that complexity their is always a backdrop of love and security.

      Your child is really lucky to have a loving, thoughtful dad.

  2. That is one damn cute baby (is it ok to use damn in reference to a baby?)! I love her crawling from the depths of the crib underworld pic! So glad to hear she is getting better at napping. I am sure that is a huge relief.

    The biting and nursing thing may be the end to our nursing days as well he bit me with his one tooth over the weekend and I just about jumped out of my skin! My goal was 6 months and has since been pushed to 8 but that might fly out the window any day now.

    1. If I can put “mofo” in a post, then you can say “damn” in the comments ;D It is truly unfun to be bitten in the midst of a lovely breastfeeding session. I see the end in sight, too, which makes me sad and a little giddy at the same time. I know I will miss breastfeeding her when it’s all over.

  3. Le Clown · · Reply

    Emily,
    I am seldom a man with little words, but: LOVE.
    Le Clown

    1. That’s one word that says a lot. Thanks, M. Le Clown.

  4. That last picture is the best thing I’ve ever seen.

    She is so darn cute!! I’m really starting to see both your faces in hers now. Love it!

    1. IKNOWRITE? She is a genius and I love her for going after that one DVD in particular. Also, your check is in the mail for saying she looks like me. I think you are the second person to ever say that.

  5. I remember that stage. It’s pretty grand, I gotta say. Emily, she’s the cutest thing ever. It’s difficult to not fall in love with her and want to fly east to babysit. Seriously. I think Miss C and I would get along perfectly. (I happen to be fluent in cooing, gurgles, and da-da-das.)

    As for breast feeding… hats off to you for going this long. There’s a point when you instinctively feel like it’s time to graduate from that. You did good, very good. Wee Cee will reap the benefits of all the wonderful nourishment and bonding you gave her.

    Lastly, let me add that you look way too young and hot for a mom of a 7 month old baby. If Miss C didn’t look just like you I’d think you were the 16 year old babysitter in that photo. ;)

    Have a happy day, Emily!!
    Lisa

    1. You are WAAAY too kind for both offering to babysit AND for telling me I look young. Flattery will get you everywhere with me. If we are ever in your neck of the woods, it’s good to know that C will have a kindred spirit in you!

      I am a little sad that breastfeeding will likely soon be over, mostly because the bonding is just so wonderful, but this is among the first ways parenthood will break my heart. Right? Thanks, Lisa!

      1. Funny, I never thought of it that way, but you’re exactly right. The first of many emotional and physical separations. :( It’s tough stuff.

  6. Wonderful post! Such a busy time!! I always loved each stage of my kids,watching them learn stuff and discover things for the first time when they are little is the best!

    1. It is so much fun! The day she discovered her hands was the best. She just turned them over and over at her eye level. It was so adorable and genuine.

  7. I love these posts. They bring back so many memories. It’s weird, 7 months and 13 months aren’t that far apart, but in terms of baby development, it seems huge.

    1. It is huge! You can literally calculate the milestones on a day by day basis. When she was only a month or so old, people used to tell me that she’s only be in her newborn state for a blink of an eye. I was like, YEAH WRITE FHERIUFWHIU. But it’s true. Kinda sad that you just have to experience it to know that the time is so fleeting.

  8. I love this age. It’s great to see Miss C go through it, ’cause I only got it with one of my kids. My son did not like crawling; he went backward the first couple of times and gave up until he could walk, so we didn’t get to see much cruising around eating dust. Hm. Maybe not crawling was a good thing. He made up for it by eating, and choking on, money.

    1. Money?! Good times, good times. I swear that babies only go after the things that are expressly not for them. C has roughly 56,937,501 toys but all she wants to play with are the garbage can, the computer cord, and the outlets.

  9. Sick babies make me so nervous. It’s so helpless. It’s like a sick animal, you can never know what’s ailing them because they haven’t learned to speak. At least one day Miss C will grow up and be able to whine about exactly what’s bothering her. Ugh boy problems.

    What would you have done if you had a rotten kid? Yours seems pretty nice but some kids are blegh.

    1. For all I know, she could be a rotten kid, but the funny thing about parenthood is that you adore them whether they are easy or hard. Our brains are wired to love them and protect them even if they give us no cause to do so. It’s just the icing on the cake if she ends up loving Mad Men as much as we do.

  10. Lol I agree with what my mom said about you looking like her teenage babysitter. This seems like the best baby stage. They can do all the little things, but they are still fully dependent on you to lug them around and stuff. That’s what you do with babies, right? Just lug them around and stuff? I’m going to be such a good mom.

    1. Lily, you are wiser than you think. That is pretty much exactly what you do with them at this point. It’s kinda cool too because they can’t tell the difference between the mall and an overpriced children’s museum, so you just lug them to the mall and they lose it because it’s so fun to them.

  11. What personality this little one has! Gorgeous!

    1. Thanks, Sandee! She is pretty expressive!

  12. adorable AND chris guest… she is being groomed for greatness, me thinks… xo

    1. We are raising her in a mockumentary environment. This is way important. Thanks, Moms!

  13. She is absolutely the cutest! And the smartest! Can’t wait to meet her!

    1. I cannot wait for you to meet her too! It won’t be long now!

  14. She definitely looks like a happy one! I want to hear about the hang out…

    1. Oh, it’s coming! The post is in the works!

  15. She’s so cute. You are great parents…

    1. Awww, thanks. I would settle with “good” so “great” is quite a compliment.

  16. “but if I told C to, she’d probably crank out a book.”
    When I first read this, I read “book” as “log.”
    Sorry I underestimated your child.

    1. No offense taken. She can for sure do both, likely at the same time.

      1. So talented, your C.

  17. This was so fun to read! Happy Seven Months!! I don’t have two-legged children, so I feel like I get to enjoy baby-hood vicariously through your posts. But without the diaper duty, woot!

    Had to smile at the NaNoWriDecade :) You go girl!

    1. I am always taking volunteers to help share in the diaper duty, so if you ever want me to put you down for a shift, I certainly will ;D

  18. Oh, man, I haven’t read your blog in a while and I have missed so much since then. She is getting so big! And I have been told that babies generally say “dada” first because its easier for their little mouths to make the sound da than ma.

    1. Hi, GN! It’s good to see you back! She is for sure getting big. I’m kind of amazed my back hasn’t given out from hefting her around.

  19. Good luck with NaNoWriDecade. I’ve mentally added the word “bad” in front of “novel” in an attempt to make it less stressful. This drives my husband crazy. “Why would you want to write a bad novel?” If I started using the phrase NaBaNoWriDecade, he would truly lose his shit.

    Oh, and this post reminded me that there is nothing better than when babies discover the concepts of hiding and chasing. Sheer happiness.

    1. My husband is also quite skeptical of NaNoWriMo. He’s like, “Oh great, more people writing books that no one will ever want to read.” I don’t think that’s really what it’s about, though; it’s more of an exercise. Most people don’t run marathons so they can win first place, but because it’s good for them.

      I can’t wait to get to that stage where she hides and runs around. <– famous last words

  20. love that picture of the two of you!

    1. Thanks! It’s probably my favorite because I’m not showcasing my 3 chins.

  21. Soooo cute! I’m glad I don’t have babies anymore but I love hearing about other people’s babies. She is adorable, the photo of her coming out from under the crib is priceless. And she loves Corky St. Clair what more do you need in a child?

    1. I know, right?! We watched Waiting For Guffman when she was like three days old and I guess it sunk in.

  22. CUTENESS OVERLOAD!!!!!

    1. Welcome to my life! ;D You have a daughter too, right Hook?

      1. I sure do, the apple of my eye…

  23. What a sweeeeeetie! She is cute stuff. You must be having a blast.

    My daughter was a horrible boob biter. Started when she turned about 9 months. I learned a technique to overcome it but I don’t know that I should’ve kept on as long (14 months). It’s a wonder I have nipples at all. Congrats on keeping yours in tact and keeping on with the pumping. Atta girl!

  24. cute baby! I adore her. There’s something in her smile that every mom would be very happy to see. I really love babies, hope to have a cute baby like yours when the right time comes :)) More luck to come to your Family :D

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