A Painted House

Dear Edison: Month Five

Posted on: April 23, 2011

Dear Edison,

You’ve just turned five months old and YOU’RE SLEEPING BETTER!  THANK GOD ALMIGHTY! 

What’s that?  Stop yelling?  Oh no, this is cause for yelling.  Shouting.  Celebration in the streets that you have finally reached a point where you sleep around eight hours (8 p.m. – 4 a.m.) before eating and then another four-ish hours after that before getting up for the day.  You even managed a ten hour stretch one time.  I know that this is considered “normal” behavior for an infant at 4-6 months old, but considering how poorly your sleep patterns were progressing I’m tempted to rent a billboard.  My prayer life has been challenged by your sporadic sleeping and when you start to cry my first response is to mumble to myself, “Please God, put him back to sleep.  I need sleep.  Please, God put him back to sleep.  I need sleeeeep.”  And it seems God is either tired of hearing me plead or finally just figured out what that jumbled mess of words was actually requesting.

It’s ironic that your sleep has improved because as your dexterity increases you’ve started pulling out your own pacifier.  The very thing for which used to wake a dozen times a night crying, causing me to tromp down the hallway to find it and give it back to you, now you purposefully pop out of your own mouth and smile.  Humph.  At least you’ve also learned to put it back in.  I’ll never tire of watching you turn your paci over in your hands, aim for your mouth, and successfully get it placed just right.  To see you make even such a small accomplishment amazes me because just a few short weeks ago you were this little lump of baby.  Now you’ve identified an object, remember it’s function, trained your muscles to manipulate it into a specific position, and able to coordinate it all together to meet one of your own needs.  Astounding.  I’ll be really impressed when you learn how to freshen your own dirty bum.

Perhaps your cutest development this month has been finding your feet.  There is something so stinkin’ adorable about a baby on his back, legs folded up like a collapsed lawn chair, sucking on his own toes.  It cracks me up every time I lay you down on your back and your feet immediately pop up ninety degrees in the baby form of a reverse crunch.  You know, great for those steel abs every infant covets.  What you’re not doing is rolling over.  You, like your brother before you, do not like the dreaded “tummy time”.  And so even though you can put those legs up, turn on your side, and get ninety percent of the way over, you refuse to actually make it all the way there.  Which is super annoying because I have to answer every inquiry about whether you’re rolling with a, “no, not yet” and then explain that there’s nothing developmentally wrong, my children just prefer to be sedentary for the majority of their first year.  I think it’s a calorie conservation plan, considering you’re always wavering right on the edge of falling off the standard growth chart.

You’ve found your voice this month and started saying “babababa”.  Your Dad and I find this endlessly fascinating and find ourselves paying rapt attention as you spit out unintelligible syllables.  Much to the confusion of your brother who speaks in paragraphs at a time and doesn’t get what the big deal is.  You mumble things that aren’t even words and we are thrilled; he conducts an entire conversation about how he does NOT have to go to bed complete with three reasons and a Power Point presentation, and we’re less than impressed.  Life’s just not fair.

You and James haven’t had many chances to chat, Edison, what with the language barrier and all.  Plus as a rule I don’t leave you alone together just in case he decides to drop the nice act and see how many legos fit in your eardrum.  But last week I had propped you up on the pillows on our bed while I ran downstairs to retrieve something and when I came back up I heard James talking to you.  I peeked around the corner to see you and your brother sitting side by side on our bed and listened as James told you all about how his birthday was coming up and he would have a Chuggington cake and there would be balloons and presents and how he was going to blow out the candles and asking you if you would like to wear a party hat, baby brother?  You were enraptured by him, all smiles and coos.  It was about the cutest thing I’ve ever seen and my Mama heart melted a little bit to see my babies interacting.  I know James is going to love it when you get just a bit older and can talk with him, play with him, antagonize him, tell on him.  As long as no where in your conversations do you conspire to rent a billboard that says, “Dear God, please send us a lamb.  Our Mom keeps telling us that she needs Sheeeeep.”

Love, Mama

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