Please forgive me. Images will be posted tomorrow. Taking too long to load tonight and just. too tired.
Last night, Caroline's Godparents arrived. They brought with them Caroline's Godsister who was born exactly two months before. I held Abby in my arms, a babe who seems impossibly small now... though Caroline was that size... not long ago... and said "2 months ago tonight your momma was so relieved that you were here and healthy and 6 months ago tonight I was" and then Katie said with me "pushing and pushing and pushing..."
Six months ago tonight I was in teary awe. The waves of "Oh my God, I have a BABY." crashed frequently and closely together then. They still crash occasionally, but they are fewer and farther between now.
I am in love with our baby. I have been in love with our baby. But as she flashed a stunning grin at Katie this afternoon and Katie said "I can see that you are an EASY baby to love." Right now... at 6 months... oh my goodness, absolutely.
We had the BEST day today- and it involved three shots! More shots than she's had in any one day before! We had a decent night. Both Kev and I felt we got some good sleep. And Caroline woke up later than she's been waking up, and woke up pretty happy. But she woke up early enough for us to be able to decide that I'd give Kev a ride to work. Which I did. And she was quite content for the ride. We came back and I changed and nursed her and she proceeded to take a two hour nap. I had to wake her up to get her ready to go to the doctor, well, I didn't have to try that hard... And she woke up happy again.
She was awake when we arrived at the pediatrician's office and so I took her out of the car seat and put her in the baby bjorn. (I realized at that moment that I did NOT have the backpack that I had packed for my appointment on campus- packed with my COMPUTER- that was the one glitch in the day- pretty scary. Did I leave it in the driveway?! Did I leave it inside- packed it, grabbed the diaper bag and the carseat and left that? This was annoying because I left the house with ample time to get to my appointment, with a beautifully packed diaper bag, feeling remarkably together! Of course... not completely! Turns out that it was sitting in the chair where I packed it, this added some extra miles and adrenaline to the day, but still, a great day!) She, for awhile now, has gotten visibly excited when the bjorn comes into view. She LOVES the bjorn. She rode into the doctor's office on me and I guess she was exuding sheer baby joy because all the employees were smitten. These are employees who have seen her before without much response, but today... they all felt blessed because she was smiling hugely at them! So, so happy was she!
She has only gained .6 pounds since her appointment a month ago, but she has grown an inch and a quarter in the past two months. She is now in the 40th percentile for weight, but her doctor is FINE with this. She attributes it to her increased activity- and goodness knows that has happened! And as she's still 75th percentile for height and head circumference, she's not worried. We got the go ahead to start her on solids with sweet potatoes (our preference), and fully planned to do that tonight, but as we were visiting with Katie and Abby we lost track of time and didn't get around to it until too late! So, no precious first solids on her six month birthday pictures or videos. She did have a few licks of sweet potato, but was really too tired for us to record the experience. Anyhow... she continues to impress the doctor. She's healthy. She's developing well. And I actually didn't have any questions this time around! She did have three shots this time... and was none too pleased. I nursed her for a bit, but she wasn't really settling well and I needed to get going, so decided to gather our things and head out. By the time we got to the check out desk she was grinning again and everyone was remarking "You're still happy after shots?!" "At the moment," said I, anticipating grumpiness when we returned to the car. But... she wasn't really grumpy in the car. She fell asleep on the drive home to look for the backpack. Stayed asleep on the drive back to campus for my appointment. Stayed asleep as I put her in her stroller and took her into the Div School and upstairs and into a small bathroom before my appointment. She woke up just as I wheeled her into my prof's office. And again, she woke up happy. I got her out and nursed her as we met. She nursed well and played with my necklace a lot (thanks Aunt Sherry for the fabulous "teething bling"! I am getting more compliments on it! And our pediatrician wishes she'd thought of it! And, most importantly, in the last two weeks Caroline has become a HUGE fan of it. Which pleases me because if she's tugging on that, she's NOT tugging on my hair!) She made all sorts of faces at my professor and was just generally delightful all through. She remained calm and quiet as I packed her up to leave.
We then went to see Katie and Abby at their hotel and Caroline was happy basically the whole time we were there. Rolling around and playing a bit, entertaining herself and then nursing and resting on me, and checking out Abby across the way. I'm sorry to say that in my pseudo-togetherness I didn't pack the camera. But we did get a few shots of their first meeting last night. (I have a feeling this is going to be a text post. To be followed by an image post.)
Katie and Abby met Caroline and me (and Kev) at our house and we had dinner and just connected all night. Good stuff.
Caroline is just happier so much more of the time now. And my goodness... it is easy to love a happy baby! And as we spend time with a 2 month old, I'm remembering how hard it is when the feedback is so minimal, the communication is all crying, the smiles are rare... oh my. But soon and very soon, Katie and Haddon will know the joy of a three month old, and then a four month old, and then five (oh wow), and then six (oh rapture!) Abby reminds me a lot Caroline, though perhaps less intense, yes... less intense... but in other ways... so similar. So I keep saying to Katie... "Things change, quickly, hang in there! She's wonderful now and will just get more and more so! Just look at Caroline... She used to be that small and communicated in all the same ways!") Not that we wish away the early days, at all... they are precious, every one. But... I do want to celebrate the particular gift that this age is proving to be (just as I celebrated earlier ages before!)
Yesterday there was a specially called presbytery meeting and Caroline was amazing through the meeting. So cooperative, so delightful... folks were fighting for the opportunity to hold her. And lay folks at the church's where I'll be preaching in coming weeks were begging me to bring her with and let them care for her! Even though they have nursery care and I have a husband! She really is different, so much more content, so much more of the time. She often rides in the car now and self-entertains. We now have a mirror up so I can see her back there and she's busy playing with a toy or the car seat strap or just chillin' out, quiet as a mouse. Wow... it is like a switch was flipped. Gone is the baby who would frequently have meltdowns in the car. She sometimes gets worked up now, but reaching around so she can either suck a finger or just feel a hand on her head usually calms her right down. It might not be the safest thing to do, but... she is so much easier to soothe now!
You already heard the big news of the week- she graduated from her bumbo! We'll be passing that on to Abby for a spell- among plenty of other things. She is LOVING her high chair, happy to play in it for good long stretches.
In the past few days she's been doing her darndest to get up on all fours. She especially likes working on this during morning feedings- while trying to stay latched on- no joke! I think Dr. Sears names one of the common nursing personalities "the gymnast" and that's our girl in the mornings at least. She shoves her butt high in the air, then wiggles her front half trying to lift it too. Then she flops down and quickly pushes her top half up in a dramatic push-up and wiggles her bottom around hoping to get it up too. This is so cute to watch! I'd prefer she save it for not nursing times, but it is cute nonetheless!
We'll try again with the sweet potatoes tomorrow... and hopefully will have a video to post!
Happy birthday, baby! I'm SO glad you were born.