It’s been a heck of a month, Dinah girl. You hit six months old and bam! started knocking out milestones left and right. You celebrated your first major holiday (Halloween). You went to your first wedding. You threw your first tiny tantrum at having something taken away that you wanted. You outgrew the baby bouncy seat.
You sat up by yourself for the first time. “By yourself” meaning I sat you there and then let go and you didn’t immediately topple over. It was a supported, tripod sit but still, it’s progress. That core strength is coming along.
We tried giving you your first real foods. First on the list was pears. You really didn’t know what to think of it at all.
The next time we tried food, you were even less sure about it. You started clamping your mouth shut, turning your head and pushing the spoon away. If I managed to sneak a bit into your mouth, you wouldn’t get upset or protest but you sure weren’t welcoming it either.
I tried giving you finger foods to explore: pieces of banana, soft cooked carrots or green beans. You wouldn’t even bring any of it to your mouth, much less take a bite. Finally, just a couple days ago on the 19th, you decided you were ready to try to eat something. Of course, it was one of those Mum-mum baby rice crackers with zero nutritional value, but I’ll take it. Going to be a carbavore like your mom, I guess. I think putting you in the high chair at the dinner table with us every night has helped a lot by showing you what food and eating is all about. You certainly seem happy to be included with all of us.
The other major milestone this past month has, of course, been crawling. You crawl the same way Zoey did: sort of an army crawl, mostly pulling with your arms and hands but also pushing with your feet a bit, but without actually getting up on your knees at all. One day you suddenly started rolling all across the living room to get to things. Two days later the crawling started, just a foot or two of distance at first. Within a couple more days you were dragging yourself all around the perimeter of the living room in under a minute. You are fast! We have turned the living room into the one safe room where we can set you on the floor a know you won’t get into anything deadly or permanently maim yourself. We have a baby gate all ready to go to keep you in there and off the stairs. Heaven help me, I have no idea what I’m going to do when you’re a walking toddler and not content with staying in just that one room anymore. With your older siblings there are a million teeny tiny choking-sized things left around at all times. While I love the layout of our house, it is decidedly problematic for baby-proofing.
Dinah, you continue to be as charismatic as ever. Strangers walking by us as I push you through parks and stores in the stroller feel compelled to stop and comment on how beautiful/gorgeous/pretty/cute/adorable you are. Zoey seems to be completely incapable of walking past you without stopping to play, cuddle or boop your nose. Ellie frequently asks to play with you and even Alden tries to share toys and make you smile. I’m not immune to your charms either. I don’t think I have ever once picked you up without also kissing you. The smell of your sweet head is intoxicating. I told your Daddy that someone needs to find a way to make a candle that smells like baby heads.
I’m slightly concerned about a few skills you aren’t really developing. You had your first laugh at four months old and it was positively enchanting. However, it seems to have been a one time thing. You haven’t really laughed again in the three months since then. The other day I blew on your tummy during a diaper change and you made a sound that was almost a laugh, but when I repeated it you looked horrified and started to cry so I think it was more of an involuntary reaction to being tickled, which you did not seem to enjoy. You also don’t smile as much as you used to. Before, anytime you saw my face, anytime someone smiled at you, your face would light up with a smile in return. Now it seems that your smiles are getting less frequent and only come in response to us really working for them. When you’re proud of yourself for something you’ve done, or sometimes when I get you playing peek-a-boo, or sometimes when meeting a new person. This constellation of changes in your demeanor and social skills reminds me quite a lot of Zoey as a baby, making me wonder if you, too, are destined for a path along the Asperger’s/Autism spectrum. Time will tell, and we will love you just as you are, either way.