This is the second to last first-year post I will be writing about Wee Cee. When I named this series “The Other Side”, I was referencing the fact that she was no long in utero. Now the title seems totally outmoded. Of course she’s no longer in my belly. She belongs out in the world and has basically found her place here. I almost don’t know what I’ll do with myself once her first year is over and I won’t be writing these Other Side posts anymore. Don’t be fooled: it’s not about writing the posts; it’s about raising a child who is way more toddler than defenseless baby. That’s scary. I’ve been thinking more and more about her impending childhood and teenagehood recently and it makes me feel overwhelmed because if I’ve learned anything during her first year of life, it’s that it goes fast and the older she gets the more complicated things will be. Stressing over whether she has gotten enough to eat will be replaced with stressing over fractions, not-so-nice kids at school, first dates, and driving a car.
So let’s focus on her babyhood while we still can, shall we?
Her days are now made up of struggles to get words out. She sticks her little tongue out and flutters it around in an effort to say what she needs. She gets frustrated at first, but I try to take her seriously and hide my amusement at her funny talking faces. We think she said “bottle” this morning. When all else fails, we ask her what a cow says and she answers with a tone of “mmmmmm”. It doesn’t matter that she makes the same sound when we ask her about the sounds of cats, horses, and sheep. She’s got the cow down so we’re good.
She can stand unassisted. She hasn’t made that first unassisted step yet, but she can hold off for awhile as far as I’m concerned because she’s difficult enough to keep up with as it is. Sometimes I feel like she gets frustrated that our apartment is small and she doesn’t have a lot of space to roam, but when I think about it, it’s really probably me who is frustrated. She doesn’t know anything else so as far as she is concerned, the place is fine. It’s just that a lot of places are off-limits to her. She is obsessed with rooting around in the fridge and the dishwasher, and we recently had to just make them unavailable to her because she was tossing everything on the floor really loud and it got to be too annoying to constantly clean up. Incidentally, pulling her away from the dishwasher when she’s already spotted that it’s open is a surefire way to make her Angry with a capital A. Stiff torso, rigid body, blood-curdling screams. Eeee-gah.
*UPDATE: Not three hours after I wrote this, she took three consecutive steps towards me. They weren’t repeated for the rest of the day. BUT STILL. :D
Her motor skills are blossoming. She loves clapping, and she tries to snap her fingers with pretty impressive precision. She likes to make the motions to wash her hands. The one thing she hasn’t gotten entirely is blowing a kiss. Instead of holding her hand up to her mouth, she holds it up to her forehead so it looks like she’s doffing a make-believe hat. She also understands the purpose of her comb and likes to run it across her head after her bath.
She is not a fan of TV. Seriously, I could not pay her with a million Cheerios to watch TV for 5 minutes. I realize that this is a relative problem that many people would love to have because their kid cries if they don’t get to watch TV, but I need to get stuff done around the apartment without having to worry that C is going to dump all her toys in the toilet in the meantime or scream at me to let her out of her play pen. I worry that I make myself too available to her because when I try to get her to play alone or amuse herself for a little while, she has a hard time settling herself down and detaching herself from me. I don’t want her to think that the world revolves around her and that she can always have my attention whenever she wants it, but she’s being pretty resistant to playing by herself for any substantial period of time. I keep telling myself that she will grow out of it. After all, she is still a baby. Also, her fussiness seems to be magnified to me a lot more when she’s going through a cluster of milestones all at once, so that is probably also making my anxiety a bit more intense.
We are gearing up her her first birthday at the end of the month. Her actual birthday is on Easter Sunday, so we will likely do big fun birthday activities on the Saturday before and then have a special family party on her actual birthday. She is a big fan of ham so she will be in hog heaven with her Easter ham! To help us celebrate her bloggy b-day, remember to send in your baby picture to thewaitingblog(at)gmail(dot)com by March 27 so you can be entered to win a prize pack filled with delicious North Carolina goodies!
Now, to take a nap. That little gal has got me tired. ;D