Month 9

Dear Henry,
You’re now 9 months old!  I know I say this every month, but I’m seriously at a loss on how we got here so fast.  It just flew by.  Little boy, you are just growing way to fast!
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You’re developmental skills are flourishing!  This month you learned how to wave bye bye.  It’s seriously the cutest thing ever.  You hold your hand up, with your palm facing your face and wave bye bye to yourself.  It doesn’t matter who you wave to, your hand always faces you.  And you wave at everything!  You do it when you’re in your high chair eating, when you’re playing, and you’ve even started to do it while you nurse.
You also now give great high fives.  You slap your little hand on mine or your dads and you just smile.  It seriously is adorable, and it makes me laugh, and then makes you laugh, and we go back and forth like that for a while.
You’re now also clapping!  Your daycare teacher said that you actually started doing it a while back, but you stopped.  But, now you’re doing it all the time!  It makes playing patty cake with you much more fun since you’re beginning to make the gestures now, and you seriously love to play patty cake.
Two days ago you actually pulled yourself up!  I held my hands out for you, and you grabbed on and hefted yourself up to standing!  You seemed so proud of yourself, as you should be!  That took some major effort!  It makes me wonder if you’re going to be walking before you learn to crawl.
You’re still not crawling, but you can spin around on your tummy and push yourself backwards  I’m not really worried that you’re not actively mobile yet.  I’m enjoying the sitting on the floor with you and playing, and the not having to chase you all over the house (that will get here before I know it and probably way before I’m ready).
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You and I have been having a lot of opportunities to laugh.  It warms my heart every time that I see your smile and hear you laugh.  Which is good for me because you are on happy little dude.  One of the things that I love is that you now make these “mmmm” noises as you nurse, and I started making them when you do, which causes you to look up at me and you’ll make that “mmmm” sound again.  And I’ll repeat it.  And you smile with a mouth full of boob.  We go back and forth like that until you’re actually laughing.  You’re so much fun!
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You had your 9 month check up at the doctor’s yesterday.  They said that you’re small, but healthy.  You weighed in at 18.4 lbs and were 26.5 inches long.  You’re in the 15th percentile for weight, and the 4th percentile for height.  Your head though, measured in the 40th percentile.  The doctor also said that you might be getting a little chunky.  I honestly don’t think you’re that rolly polly for a baby.  You’ve got some pudge, but nothing excessive, and all babies have pudge on them.  Your rolls do not have rolls.  You’ll also trim down when you start crawling and walking, so I’m really not concerned.
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Eating and nursing have been going great.  I will admit that I tear up when I think about the fact that we’re going to scale way back when you’re a year old.  I love nursing you.  It is the best thing ever.  You relax so much while nursing and it’s the best cuddle time.  I love nursing you at night and watch as at first you’re playing while you eat, and then you get more tired and your eye lids start to droop and eventually you just fall completely asleep.  You never do let go at night.  I always have to unlatch you.  If it were up to you, you’d sleep all night attached to me.  Once you hit the year mark, I’m going to start cutting way back on the pumping, and I’ll slowly start to give you less and less milk during the day at daycare, which is where my freezer stash will come into play.  I plan on continuing to nurse you every morning and evening for as long as you want.  I’m really hoping that it’s not for a while yet.  I’m loathe to give up that one on one time with you.
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You’re becoming so interactive.  You can say “Mama” and “Dada,” although your dad and I aren’t sure if you’re actually calling us that, or if you’re just saying it to say it.  But, a couple weeks ago when I picked you up from daycare, you looked at me, smiled and said “Mama.”  Talk about pulling on my heart strings!  We took you on a play date this past weekend with one of your daycare mates.  It was so much fun to watch you play with another baby.  Although, little man, you’ve got to learn to share.  Your friend would pick up a toy, and you’d see her do it, and then you’d grab it right out of her hands.  So, she’d pick up another one, and you’d then grab that one too.  It seems like you always want what you don’t have.

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You’re also developing a temper.  A little while back, you got a hold of a small plastic baggie, and I took it away from you, since it’s not a proper toy, and you got mad!  You started doing your mad cry, and then threw yourself down on the ground to cry harder, throwing your arms and flailing your legs as you cried.  You also took a small break to looked up long enough to see if I was watching, and then went right back to screaming.  It was really hard not to laugh at you.
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I have so much fun with you.  I really really do.  You’re awesome.  Your dad and I comment on your awesomeness at least twice daily.  I love you so much.  I’m just filled with so so much love for you.  It’s hard to explain fully just how much you’ve impacted my life.  I’m incredibly happy and thrilled that you’re a part of my life.  I love you with all of my being.
– Mom

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

The Good:
Henry came to work with me Thursday morning because of an Ophthalmologist appointment I made a while back to have his eyes checked. Amblyopia and Strabismus run in my family (my sister and I have both).

Henry and I had a good morning. He was a little too stuffed up to nurse that morning before work, but he ate his bagel and cream cheese for breakfast like a champ, so I wasn’t so worried. I figured that as he woke up more, he’d nurse better. And, he was great throughout the rest of the morning.

We got to work and he played and then went down for a nap before we headed out to the appointment. He was tired (I had to wake him up from his nap to load him up) but otherwise happy. And, he was a little ham when we got to the Dr.’s office -smiling and “talking” to everyone.

The Bad:
His eyes were checked for straightness (strabismus), and I was told that they’re beautifully straight. Then they dilated his eyes with drops and we waited in the waiting room for them to take effect. About 15 minutes later we were called back and the Dr. looked into Henry’s eyes with all sorts of objects and lights. And then he laid the bad news on me….Henry is at risk for developing amblyopia (lazy eye).

Right now, his left eye is twice as far sighted as his right eye. When amblyopia develops, the weaker eye (in this case – Henry’s left) stops being used by the brain because the eye sight in it is so bad, and therefore, the stronger eye will compensate. Meaning that the longer it goes untreated, the weaker the weak will get until it simply isn’t used by the brain to see anymore. The good news is that this is all treatable, and that we’re watching Henry to see if it does indeed develop.

The doctor wants us to come back in a year to check his eyes again. If his vision gets better, then we’ll probably do nothing, because nothing will need to be done. If his vision stays the same or gets worse, then Henry will be put in glasses and patched to strengthen his left eye.

I’m handling this news ok. I went through this myself at his age, and I know that with treatment that he’ll have perfectly normal (possibly corrected) vision. I am a bit upset that it looks like he got my horrible eye problems…but there was a 50/50 chance that he would. So, nothing much to do there.

The Ugly:
After we got back to my office, I nursed Henry before we were both going to have lunch, and while nursing him I noticed that his cheeks were really pink, like, almost red. And, he felt a little warm to me. He ended up falling asleep nursing, so I let him nap while attached to me, and I figured we’d eat and I’d take his temp when he woke up. He woke up about 20 minutes later and I changed his diaper and then took his temp. He was running a 102.4 temperature on Thursday afternoon.

I called the eye doctor to make sure that the eye drops they gave me couldn’t cause a fever, and that this wasn’t some sort of allergic reaction. I was told that the eye drops don’t cause fevers, so it looks like he was hit with a cold. So, I made an appointment with his Ped, and they looked him over and told me that his ears were clear, his throat looks good, and he was a healthy sick little guy. So, we just had to wait this cold out.

All of Thursday, Friday and Saturday Henry had a fever. It got all the way up to 103.1 twice, which freaked me the hell out, which led to J calling the doctor asking what to do. But, sometime during the night on Saturday his fever broke and he’s been slowly getting better. We tried to keep his fever reasonably in check with Tylenol, and he got about 2 doses of it a day. He hasn’t been sleeping so well lately, and I think it’s mostly due to how congested he is. J and I have been suctioning rivers of snot out of his nose. I have no idea how a boy so small can make so much snot, but it just keeps coming.

I’m glad that he’s on the mend. It breaks my heart when he’s sick. He just wants to cuddle nonstop and be held. So, all of Thursday and Friday I spent cuddled up with my baby, and he’d lay his head on my shoulder and just sit like that for hours. It was sad and sweet at the same time.

Crawling?!

When I picked Henry up from daycare yesterday, his morning teacher left me a note that said that he is on the verge of crawling. That during the day he managed to scoot himself forward a little bit. He never did get up on his hands and knees, but he’s propelling himself forward bit my bit!

OMG! My baby is getting ready to crawl! I’m so not ready for this! My floors are no where near clean enough, and with 3 cats and a dog and a full time job, I really doubt that they’re ever going to be! I’m also not ready to give up putting him on the floor to play while I go and do something that needs to be done, and when I come back, he’s still in the same spot! I’m not ready to have to look for him all over the house! I’m not ready for him to be big enough and independent enough to crawl. I’m really just not ready for any of it…..

I feel so torn about all of this. I want to do a happy dance that my baby is going to be crawling any day now, but I also want to sit down and cry because my baby is going to be crawling any day now! How did we get here already? It seriously feels like two months ago I brought him home from the hospital!!!

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Coming Home

Yesterday was my birthday, and when I walked in the door yesterday, this is what I came home to

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I had a card from J and one from Henry, and flowers from both of them. I also got a baby who was ready to be cuddled and snuggled as soon as he woke up. It was a great birthday!