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You have swiftly become an 8 month old! You’ve now been here playing with us for almost as long as you grew inside of me. Wow! Even I’m blown away and I have the opportunity to be here with you each and every day, growing and changing right alongside you.
You’re such a delight. I love you so very much. And that smile of yours, boy is it infectious. You delight me with your willingness and desire to play with all of us. The way you go after toys, or your brother, with such intention warms my heart. Sometimes it scares me, because you’re just so mobile.
See, I’ve not had a baby before you, in this space – our home. We lived in a different, much smaller place, when your brother was your age now. That place had it’s own challenges and things that would scare me. But, this beautiful house we now live in, well it’s different.
You’re so curious about everything and you really want to check out it’s taste and texture and I’m seemingly always behind on housework. Things are dirty or messed up faster than I can do them, but I try to stay on top of it all. I try to keep things out of your reach that might be dangerous or harmful, yet your reach keeps broadening.
We are all so busy living and loving one another. I’ve come to accept this is just the ways things are when you have little children, you’ll find this out one day I hope, but it doesn’t really ease my mind. So, instead of keeping you away from things, I let you roam and just keep an extra eye and ear out for things going in your mouth.
Things are so different with you than they were when your brother was your age. See, by now, your brother had already sprouted multiple teeth. You, on the other hand, haven’t. You crawl, like a really serious crawl, but your brother didn’t. About that crawling of yours, boy are you fast! When you really go after something you’re like lightening with how quickly you get to it. And the way you try to follow one of us around the house is actually comical.
You sit and watch and wait, then you get going, but because the rest of us are walking, you can’t quite keep up. That’s when you stop and watch again before getting upset. Sometimes I come right to you and other times I don’t. This just makes you more upset. Inevitably, I also get upset.
I’m upset because I’m often trying to fix, direct, or somehow handle your brother and meet his needs as well. I’m still learning how to meet both of your needs at once when they’re so different, yet similar, and often simultaneous. It hurts me to see and know how upset you are in these moments and I’m so sorry I can’t just stop all the time.
Actually, I often feel some pain or sadness that you don’t get the exclusive one-on-one time with me. You and I don’t often get to just hang out and play, or nurse, or talk. Always, there’s interruptions. More often than not, it’s your brother also wanting to play, or talk, hug you, read books, and just be with us. I love him for it and I love you for your patience and forgiveness.
In fact, I love that the two of you have each other. I love that you and your brother are finding ways to play together. Right now, it often is more you putting toys in your mouth while he’s playing. Sometimes you’re trying to use a toy he wants to use. Sometimes he’s taking a toy away from you. And sometimes your crawling right in the mix of me playing with him. I love how excited you get to just be right there while he’s playing, too. I love the way your face lights up when you notice something new or different or when you realize there’s more than just this one toy you have in your mouth.
Even though I’m not ready, I love that you’re so interested in our foods now. Your Papa and I aren’t quite ready for you to have much by way of foods yet. Mostly because you don’t have any teeth and I worry. But, you have had some small tastes of bread or crackers or the random piece of unnoticed meat on the floor before I take it. You are tenacious though, as you go after our food and really try to get it to your mouth. You’re also hilarious when you do get something and want it in your mouth, because you’ll often end up with it somewhere on your face. Yet, you keep trying.
That’s one thing I hope you never stop doing – trying something new over and over again until you get it. A few things I hope you continue – always laugh at boundaries, never stop playing and enjoying our family and life, and forever be curious and engaged with the world around you. And, I hope you’ll continue to grow and change at your own pace.