Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Dear Henry - Month 3

Dear Henry,
Happy 3 month birthday!

The fact that you are three months old is completely blowing my mind.  How did this even happen?  Time is moving too quickly.  When we brought you home you were this teeny, hairy, little chicken boned thing and now you’re an enormous meatball.  My favorite meatball.  The best meatball I ever knew, for sure.  We had your 2 month check-up (after your 2 month birthday, which is why I didn’t talk about this there) and you weighed over 13 pounds and were in the 80th percentile for weight.  This is so fantastic because we were so worried about you when you were first born and kept losing all that weight.  You, apparently, are just like your mama in that you know how to make a heck of a comeback.  It is also fantastic because it’s given you the most adorable pot belly that I’ve ever seen and the much much coveted thigh and knee rolls that are nearly impossible to look at without squealing.  You’re getting so big, little man, and also exponentially cuter (as if that were even possible).
Month three wasn’t as hard as month two.  That’s not to say that it wasn’t hard – it was just hard in a different way.  We’re still learning you and learning how to accept that the unexpected is the new norm.  I went back to work this month.  I spent the last two weeks of my maternity leave completely stressed out about that.  I didn’t know how we were going to take the chaos that was (is) our lives together and somehow smush them into a semblance of organization to get us both out of the house, dressed (in more than a robe) without screaming and crying and being hopelessly late.  I also didn’t know how I was going to survive the days without you when you and I were constant companions for the last three months.  I was afraid.  And then the day came when I actually did have to make this seemingly impossible thing work and – you know what?  We did it.  It wasn’t pretty (especially not that first day) but we did it.  I think we might have even rocked it.  And – like so many life changes that I have been so paralyzingly afraid of in the past?  It wasn’t that bad.  In some pretty significant ways?  It was actually kind of good. 
The whole world is exciting! 
I still miss you all the time while I’m at work, but I put your picture up all over and sometimes I just sit and look at your sweet face for a bit to help take the sting off.  I hope that you’re not missing me – but I know that you’re in good hands at daycare and I don’t really worry about you so much as I just miss you.  The first day we brought you home from daycare you completely zonked out on us at 6:30 p.m.  We had no idea what to do with you.  We felt like 6:30 was too early for a bedtime but we weren’t really sure if it was a nap – so we just put you in your swing thinking you’d be up in a couple of hours and then we could do the bedtime routine with you.  You woke up 7 hours later.  SEVEN.  HOURS.  That was the longest you’d ever slept.  Your dad got you into your pajamas and fed you a bit and then you passed right back out.  Daycare must be exhausting!  Your day two wasn’t much different – only this time we knew that you belonged in your crib and not your swing.  We are hopeful that this is the beginning of a beautiful establishment of sleep schedule. 
Daddy's Boy
My favorite change in the last month is hands down the fact that you’ve started smiling, cooing, and sometimes even doing a little giggle (if we’ve made big enough fools out of ourselves for you).  It’s so amazing to hear your little voice as you start to make new sounds.  Your relationship with the ceiling fan is still going strong, but your happiest place in the world is on your changing table.  You just wiggle and giggle and beam that great big gummy smile all over whenever we lay you down there.  We have two framed pictures of you hanging over the table, and you like to lay there and talk to them.  It’s the cutest thing I’ve ever seen, even if it does make getting the diaper changed a little challenging. 
Somebody seems to have missed the point of tummy time.
You attended your first wedding this month – my cousin Sam got married and you got all dressed up for the occasion.  You were a champ – there was much car travel and an overnight hotel stay involved and I could not be more proud of how you just went with the flow.  The ceremony was pretty short, so you basically just ate a bottle for the whole thing.  You took a tiny cat nap at the reception, and otherwise were perfectly content to be passed around and take in all the sights.  Of course, you left everyone who held you with your current trademark gift – spit up.  Everyone got a piece of that and then you gave me your grand finale spit-up spectacular which, ultimately, signaled our exit from the wedding. 

"Dapper Dan" all dressed up for the wedding.
You are the spitty spittiest.  We asked the doctor about that because it seems like you spit up all the time, even hours after you’ve eaten.  The doctor tells us it’s nothing to worry about so I usually just try to keep all kinds of blankets and burp rags on hand to spare us all from a spit-up coating – but sometimes you are sneaky and we all get covered nonetheless.  Nobody is immune – not even the animals!
The whole family - before the stealth spitting began!
After we got home from the wedding we had a pretty lazy day.  You took a lot of cat naps and tried to recover from all that partying.  During one of your awake times, we put you in your Bumbo (or the “Bimbo” as it is now affectionately called around this house) and you fussed a bit so your daddy put your pacifier in your mouth. You were staring off at something fascinating on the wall and I was moving around trying to get your attention to get a picture of you when I finally caught your eye and you spit that pacifier out of your mouth and gave me the biggest, brightest, gummiest little grin.  My heart exploded because – for the first time – I had done nothing to earn that smile.  No silly songs or goofy voices, no crazy dances around the room.  For the first time just my being there, in your line of sight, was all it took for that gorgeous smile.  It was a gift from you, and my heart exploded in a million little bits of crazy uncontrollable love.  I hope you felt that.
My heart!  I die.
It is impossible for me to wrap my brain around how much you've grown in so little time, much less contemplate how much more growing you have ahead.  You change every day, which makes every day a whole new adventure.  You are a little light - shining so bright and raining happiness wherever you go.  You are also a tiny terror, a demanding dictator with very unforgiving deadlines.  You are a perfect package and we're loving every minute of getting to know you.  This is, without question, the toughest job I've ever had, but it's already also the most rewarding, fun, amazing, and fulfilling.  I can't wait to see what month 4 brings. 

Love and kisses all over,