Category Archives: Actual Babies

Letter | The Second

Dear Little One,

It’s been four months since you were born, and I just now feel like the whirlwind is calming. And that’s kind of not fair because I feel like I blinked my eyes and my fragile, five pound, six week early little boy is suddenly a filled-out, healthy Gerber baby who bears strikingly little resemblance to the tiny person I met on October 24th. The thing of it is, as grateful and proud as your Papa and I are that you are as healthy and hearty as you are, a small part of me misses the early days of constant cuddling.

Your Papa and I like to call you Monkey. This is evolved from “Buddy” which got tossed because it’s the name we sometimes call the dog, and “Bunny” which was jokingly vetoed by your father as “not manly enough for my son.”

I do my best, but sometimes Bunny still comes out, and no matter what we call you, we can’t seem to avoid calling Scout by the same thing. I hope one day I don’t find you both eating out of the same (or different…) dog dish and running toward me when I get the leashes out.

While I loved the Littlest of People you were when you were born, I’m so glad to have you home from the hospital – something that takes a few days in the best of cases, but took a month in yours. You’ll never remember the 37 days you spent in the NICU, but your Papa and I will never forget it. The days we spent at your side, looking when we couldn’t touch, talking to you when we were told you could be awake, helping purple-gloved nurses give you your first baths, take your temperature and change tiny diapers…eating too many meals in the hospital cafeteria – they will be with us for the rest of our lives.

You were loved from the beginning – your Grandmas spent nights with you so you didn’t have to be alone. Your Grandpas, Aunts and Uncle, Great Grandparents visited as often as they could, and the rest of your family and friends held their breaths every day for news of your health.

Try to remember this when you’re five and Mama holds on a little too long before letting you go into your kindergarten class.

But, despite a less than smooth start into the world, you have shown us all how tough and special you are. Someday I hope you read this, and I’d like to tell you a little bit about who you are now:

Lovely Locks. You were born with a full head of dark, movie star hair. Until this last week or two, you managed to keep most of it. What’s left is getting lighter and looking more…middle aged. You have a nice combination of male pattern balding meets Mohawk meets Mullet – and you’re still so handsome strangers ask me for your autograph.

Squeaker. When you were born, we joked that you didn’t cry, you squeaked. It wasn’t until you were probably two months old before we heard sounds of discontent that resembled crying versus that noise that happens when you step on a dog toy. It was the cutest thing, and I could always pick you out of the NICU crowd as soon as I walked in the door.

Peepers. You have your Papa’s blue eyes and have from day one. Babies’ eyes tend to change colors, but most of us are pretty sure you get to keep these Baby Blues. I have been looking into extra-long fly swatters to keep the women away, but I fear it’s a lost cause – especially when you smile.

Smiles and giggles. As soon as you figured this one out, we were goners. You find joy in the smallest of things – at this point mostly when we stick our tongues out at you or open our mouths really big. I don’t know what you see in there that is so hysterical, but Monkey, let me tell you, we are slaves to that giggle. I didn’t realize how people became those parents that embarrass themselves to no end to entertain their children – that is until I regularly find myself sticking my tongue out and showing you my tonsils in public just to see a smile on your face. As you grow, I wouldn’t mind it if you found less…embarrassing things to be funny. People tend to stare at you when you stick your tongue out at infants.

Llamas. It’s been a week since I started writing this letter. Now you think it’s funny when we tell you “L is for Llama,” and make a spitting noise. I have a feeling fart jokes are in your future.

Leaps and Bounds. You take a nap and I think sometimes you wake up an inch longer than when you went down. You’re four and a half months old and I am scrambling to find you clothes in the 6-9 month range. If there are pictures of you at five months wearing a bed sheet – we’ve finally run out of clothes and/or the money to buy them, and we’ve given up.

Bilingual. You roll your r’s like a pro and now that you’ve discovered this – we hear one long trill after another, all day long. You, dear son, are fluent in Chewbacca.

I could keep going, but I am going to leave a little mystery out there for you.  Just know that every day we learn something new about you, and it’s just about the most fun your Papa and I have ever had.

Thank you for being you.

Love,
Mama

Image

Advertisements
Tagged ,

Letter | The First

Dear Baby Boy,

It’s already a pleasure to know you. We have been getting to know one another for about 6 months at this point, and I can tell you’re going to be like your Papa was when he was a little boy – energy in motion. I’m sure your grandparents, my parents, would  have a few stories to tell you, but I always remember myself as quiet and calm – reading or thinking about stories more than acting them out. Meanwhile, your Papa’s parents would blink and he would be hanging from the kitchen light fixture… but don’t get any ideas.

You like to wake up and tumble about usually around the nines – 9 AM and 9 PM, with a few play dates in between. I don’t know what you’re doing in there, maybe bowling, but its one of the strangest feelings. Someday, I’m sure you’ll swallow a bug or goldfish or something and have only a small inkling of how it feels to have you in my tummy. I suppose it’s Nature’s way of keeping babies close to their Mama’s hearts until they’re ready to venture outside into the comparably colder world and meet the rest of their families. Regardless, you’re getting bigger and bigger every day – a fact documented by my quickly disappearing feet and a belly button that grows shallower every day.

You’ve been pretty kind to your old Mom this whole time – you didn’t make me nauseous for long and even then, it was never so bad as to actually become sick. For a while, you did enjoy naptimes so much so that you couldn’t help but share them with me, and I would fall asleep mid-sentence and at all times of the day. Beyond that though, I feel that you and my bladder are playing a really lopsided game of Rock/Paper/Scissors. Guess what, the bladder is taking a beating.

The only truly uncomfortable side effect of your tenancy is a constant feeling of being full – really, really, Thanksgiving-esque full. Perhaps you’re already saving me from what damage the combination of pregnancy cravings and a love of doughnuts could do. When people ask me how I’m doing, sometimes the feeling that my tummy is full like a beach ball filled to the brim with sand can override all else. However, what I mean to tell them is that you are a sweet boy who isn’t giving me too much trouble, and I’m thankful. According to my sources, as a growing boy you won’t understand the concept of “full” for a while. Most people start a college fund for their children, but I’m convinced a grocery store fund isn’t out of the question.

I read that, at this point, your little face looks pretty much how it will look when we meet you in December. I can’t help but hope that you have your Papa’s chin dimple and his happy, intelligent, blue eyes. While we’ll get to wait a bit longer to see what color your eyes will be – I have to admit the little kid in me who shakes the presents at Christmastime will probably go get one of those cool 3D ultrasounds so your Papa and I can put a face to your name.

And now, since it’s late and you are rolling around again enough to make me realize a bathroom trip is in order, I’ll say good night and sleep tight.

Love,
Mama

Tagged , ,

A Plan With Good Intentions

I can imagine how having this little one is going to be for me, an inkling anyway. I know its going to be fluffy clouds, naps all day, a cooing, smiling, blue baby boy daydream. Mark my words.

I can even imagine how its going to be for Husband Dearest – just one more face to kiss before heading merrily off to golf, right?

But in thinking about how this will work for our furry children, I imagine it from their view and see this Braveheart-esque charge down the hill that is our front lawn. In comes 7lbs (hopefully) of noisy smell and the 500lbs of “necessities” that come with it. They haven’t seen much of their parents in the last few days, and can’t quite put their finger on why this isn’t like the other trips they remember from the past. Once their people come home, at least one is too tired to properly accept the usually-proclaimed upon greeting and the other is lugging the “necessities,” and everyone is yelling for the dogs to stop jumping around.

So, in my blog-grazing adventures, I came across the idea of getting a real-looking baby doll to get the dogs accustomed to sharing my lap and not jumping, etc. You know, just kind of easing the transition. Amazon Prime to the rescue! Now, as my purpose for this purchase was dog training, I was all for the economical approach to fake baby brothers…which meant getting the less expensive girl baby – a choice which, when photographed, got Facebook all atwitter. Regardless, today marks day one of carrying this tiny, plastic, baby-smelling thing around, calling it “The Baby,” encouraging easy sniffing and less jumping. It seemed to go fairly well for the dogs.

The thing is, it totally backfired – for me.

In the course of carrying it around, trying to put clothes on it, holding it awkwardly as I watch television, I realized that this tool I have acquired to calmly introduce my dogs to a baby had made me come to grips with the fact that I have no idea what I’m doing. None.

I had that baby’s arm almost off before I was able to put that tiny onsie on. While the fur babies settled on the floor and next to me on the couch, I sat there staring at this plastic, powder-scented girl-boy baby and thought, well now what? I hope feeding really does take the time everyone says it does because I was totally at a loss as to what to do with him-her otherwise. I was on my 12th trip to the bathroom when I realized I was no longer holding the baby and it was about 3 minutes later before I realized it was because I had left it on top of the toilet tank. I’m fairly sure that is not a good plan moving forward.

So, while I know women have been doing this for centuries, fairly successfully, I can only hope that, come December, maternal instincts kick in. Failing that, I hope the real baby’s arms move a little easier for putting clothes on.

Oh, and if anyone knows how to attach a crib to the back of the toilet, you know my digits.

Tagged , , ,

Passing First Base

Dear Internet,

I now realize why, when asked how far along they are, pregnant ladies always answer in weeks. As a non-pregnant person in the past, I was always a little confused by their answers – smiling, nodding, walking away trying to divide in my head. Now I realize pregnant ladies answer that way because they have no idea how many months they are either! Truly, the whole date of conception, date of implantation, due date, you’re this far along, but the baby is technically a week behind you thing is danged confusing!

So, don’t be surprised if, when you ask me, I will answer you with “I am 17.5 weeks today.” What that means, dear Internet, is that the Second Trimester is firmly under way – goodbye to all of those charming First Trimester symptoms and hello to, well, the calm before the storm. And also the period where you are no longer terrified you are going to look pregnant – you’re begging for it, because at this point you still look like you had too good a time at the Gattitown pizza buffet.

It’s also a fantastic time to notice things. Like, hey, we should probably think about buying this kid some furniture. Or, man, I hope this kid does not inherit my flying squirrel arms. Most recently, I have noticed that having dogs is probably great training for having kids. And here’s why:

Why Dogs are Excellent Training for Having Kids:

  1. You Must Feed Them – an easy one, I grant you that. But how many times have you looked your dog in the eye at 2:30 p.m. and realized they aren’t following you around all day because they love you – they’re doing it because you forgot to feed them breakfast, and they have no thumbs to do it themselves?
  2. You Must Potty Them – sure, the methods may differ, but the truth of the matter is if you don’t let the dog out, or change the baby’s diaper, there will be a mess in your house. Likely on you, your clothes, your carpet, you name it. I swear to the heavens above, though, that if I ever have to pull a 14-ft long piece of grass from my kiddo’s hindquarters, I am saving it in his baby book to show him and his date on prom night.
  3. You Freak Out When They’re Sick – they can’t talk to you and tell you what hurts. They just lay down a lot, looking pitiful and fevery-hot, not wanting to eat or play, and you’re willing to plop down your mortgage to fix it. Luckily so far, this usually resolves itself with a delayed bowel movement containing at least one stuffed animal ear or tennis ball parts. Let’s hope kids are this easy too – “Look Husband Dearest, I found your headphones!”
  4. You will never go to the bathroom alone again – I know about doors, and their purpose in keeping others out while you attend to some thangs. However, I also realize it is almost worthless to try at my house, because it is a heck of a lot easier yelling at Husband Dearest to get the bejeezus out of here than it is to keep little doggie noses from battle-ramming their way in. Sometimes I give up and the little one sits on my lap. I am pretty sure that’s why, of the two of us, he likes me more than Husband Dearest – and I’m not afraid to exploit that.

Now that your mind is sufficiently blown, I will leave you with this amazingly brilliant and artistic cartoon and the happy dance that is sure to follow:

Baby Comic Gender Reveal

Tagged , , , ,

Prunes, Stretch Pants and Doggie Eye Conversations

Well, I started this blog as the tales of a childless mommy blogger, and have since found myself with child – thanks a lot, Husband Dearest! Not that I’m not excited. I am. And terrified, in denial, in expectation – wait. What was I saying again?

Which brings me to my main point today. The joys of the first trimester. Allow me to list them: Nausea, forgetfulness, impromptu nap-taking in public places, number one-ing all the time (and wanting to even when there’s nothing there) and not going that other number all the time, without help.

I knew about morning sickness, which has mostly passed. I could guess that you may be tired, you know, growing a person and all that. However, being stopped up in the (eyebrow raise – eyebrow raise) region is a pregnancy side effect not as highly publicized. Maybe because people don’t like to say words like “constipated.” However, if the World Wide Web is any indication, words like “placenta,” “womb” and “birth” are just fine to say. Anyone else think these words are grosser than Rush Limbaugh’s sex tape? Ugh.

Now, pregnancy brain is something I have seen first hand and believe in. I just can’t believe it starts this early. It does, Internet, it does. I cannot count the times I have walked into the room knowing I had a mission, doing an eye-lock with the dog – willing the beast to tell me just what I was doing in this room.

Sometimes they answer. Don’t judge me.

I think they’re just going off of a bank of sure-fire answers in the hopes they’re right:

  1. “Well, Mama, you are here to get me a treat. It’s right there in that cabinet next to where you’re standing. I am also standing right here, and it would be incredibly efficient if you were to just go ahead and give it to me now.”
  2. “Well, Mama, you are here to pee. I don’t know how in the life of me you manage to balance yourself up there and do that, but I have resigned myself to the fact that I can’t explain why you do the voodoo that you do. Just don’t forget to flush.”
  3. “Well, Mama, you are here to eat something. Probably something sweet with extra fiber added to it, because of the you know what. Try prunes. I don’t like them, but the old folks swear they’re like magic. You aren’t fooling anyone with those Fiber One bars – you know they’re practically cookies.”

Baby Comic 2.jpg

Tagged , , , , ,