Friday, June 4th, 2010 • No Comments on A Letter to Patrick, Six Months Old
You were born six months ago today, changing my life forever. I have come a long way from the woman who had never changed a diaper and didn’t even know how to hold a newborn. And you, sweet monkey, have come a long way from that pink wriggling bundle that only slept, ate and taught me how to change diapers! Half a year is hardly any time at all, but I feel as if you have become a little person, complete with likes and dislikes and an awesome personality, in that short span of time.
You had your six month appointment today, along with the required vaccinations. What an amazing child you are, hardly even flinching until the third and final shot when you voiced your discomfort for all of thirty seconds before returning to your usual good humor. You are weighing in at 20 pounds and 6 ounces and are a little over 27 inches long. Quite a happy, healthy chunk, you are! No teeth yet—the pediatrician said it might be another couple of months for those.
This month has brought many new things to your life—first of all, your father is home from deployment! His homecoming was a wonderful day for us as a family, though I’m afraid the long wait for him to arrive tested the limits of your patience. It was your first—and perhaps last—experience with a Navy homecoming, but you handled it amazingly well. I don’t know who was smiling bigger—you or your father! Now it’s just a matter of the two of you getting to know each other better. It’s going well so far—no doubt because you both share the same mellow temperament in addition to looking so much alike.
I held off on feeding you solid foods until your father got home because I didn’t want him to miss any more of the milestones of this first year. You clearly don’t mind if I hold off even longer—the few solids you’ve tried so far have not impressed you. Rice cereal, bananas, applesauce, sweet potatoes, carrots and peas receive the same initial look of distaste. You seem to be getting used to the idea of eating off the spoon and want to help yourself, with messy results all around. (Truth be told, I’m far messier than you!) I think as you eat each food a few times you’re starting to get used to the taste and hopefully soon we’ll be able to offer you the things you like best. Right now, I think sweet potatoes are your favorite, but you’d still prefer your bottle to anything on a spoon. I imagine all of that will change in just a few months!
You are nearly able to sit up unassisted now. This new view of the world, with just my hand on your back or your hand on my arm for support, gives you the opportunity to grab for the things you want—whether it’s your bottle, your stuffed Tigger or whatever happens to be within reach on the kitchen table. You can roll from your back to your tummy quite easily and are mastering the tummy-to-back roll now. Crawling is on the horizon, but for now you can scoot backwards and spin yourself around while on your tummy. It won’t be long before you’re fully mobile. Heaven help us then.
You are a happy, smiley little guy, able to coax a grin from anyone, even those who aren’t too fond of babies. I think it’s the dark blue eyes and mop of blond hair—and that quirky, shy little half-smile you give strangers that blossoms into an open mouthed toothless grin once they’ve gained your approval. No one is impervious to that combination—certainly not me. (Again, heaven help me when you’re old enough to use your charms to get what you want!) Going for a ride in the truck, visiting new places, meeting new friends, everything sparks your curiosity and amusement. Oh, and you have a particular fondness for dark-haired girls. If they have tattoos, all the better. Oh my!
You’re learning new things almost on a daily basis and I love watching you study everything around you. I had no idea before you were born how entertaining it would be to watch you discover the world. You are just so much fun to be around. It seems I have learned a few things as well in the past six months thanks to my wonderful, good natured teacher. Because of you I’ve learned to slow down, be more patient and forgiving, enjoy the little accomplishments and appreciate the simple moments. Oh, and when all else fails, to smile. Thanks, baby.
Happy half-year birthday, baby. Mama loves you.