Taking a page from Dooce’s book.
Dear Baby Girl,
Today you are 11 months old. Only one more month can I say you’re zero years old. I know it seems weird to be commemorating not quite being 1, and I probably would have waited for a nice round birthday anniversary, but hey, why not get a head start? I’m ahead of your grandmother this way.
A year ago, we were more than attached at the hip, and I was determined to keep it that way for a few more weeks. As far as I was concerned, you were going to be as fully cooked as possible, and if that meant dealing with having my kidney catheterized and showering only twice a week, that was how it would be. I just focused on April 4. But I hated the showering thing. Little did I know it would be practice for later.
Thank you for cooperating and coming into your own on schedule. Hopefully that’s a sign to come that you’ll be punctual most of the time (I said hopefully). The first things I saw when they popped your little head over the curtain were your dimples. Oh boy, were we in trouble. We’ve come to discover that you were also born with the inherent knowledge of how to work them, and work them you do, every change you get. That is the reason your father is currently shopping for a shotgun.
I am still in awe of how healthy you were from the very start. You have been a champion eater from day 1. The nurses would tell me if I could get you to drink 10 or 15 ml, you’d be doing great. You drank 2 ounces and screamed for more. The pediatrician told me that you wouldn’t need a 1 week doctor visit because you were doing so well. That’s when I started to breathe again. I mean, I knew you were a fighter (there were times I thought you were going to punch your way out of my belly). But with an A+ from a medical professional, I could believe we were past the trauma and could start to live.
You are the smiliest baby I have ever seen. You are almost always happy, unless you’re pissed off and then you let me know that tout suite. You love to wave hello and bye-bye and just randomly at the air it seems. You get tickled and clap and clap and clap. You started crawling much earlier than your brother, and just matter-of-factly took off without a lot of practice or warning. I think that when you spend time with your cousins, it bugs you that they can do things you can’t because they’re 3 ½ months older, and you work to catch up as fast as possible. That’s why we sometimes call you the lost triplet. You even beat Maddie with your first tooth. I’m sure you’d never let her forget that if you had the chance.
You are loud. There is no other way to put it. You can let out a squeal that makes my ears ring. Sammy absolutely hates it (especially since his ear tubes) and fervently wishes you would cut that right out. Can’t say I disagree with him.
Today, you were following your brother around, as is your practice, watching him get ready for lunch. You let go of the kitchen chair and were just… standing. For a good 20 seconds. You didn’t bobble or tremble or give me a worried look at all. After a little while, you just decided you were done and slowly sat down. This is probably a sign that you’ll be walking soon, and oh man, I am in for it then. I can see that glint in your eye. I want you to develop at your own pace, but if you want to slow down, that’s OK by me. I’ll take all the baby time I can get.
So here’s to the last month of the zeroes. I know it will go by all too fast, just as the first eleven did, and I’ll blink and you’ll be off to college. But until then, I’ll treasure every dimply grin I can get. I love you, Sweetie.