December 03, 2008

Month Five

Dear Penelope,

Today you turn five months old. There wasn’t any big new development this month, but you worked hard improving your standard repertoire. For instance, now when I lay you on your back you have flipped over to your tummy before I pull my hands away. I take you once a week to a “Mommy and Me” play class called Gymboree with other babies your age. When it comes time to put you on your tummies all the other babies moan and whine and complain, but not you. You spend the whole class on your tummy reaching out to whoever you can, Id swear you’ll be crawling across the room in no time. Here you are under the Christmas tree watching the train. You love that train, your hands quiver with excitement each time it comes around.


I broke down and got you an exersaucer, and the worst part is that I think you are already bored of it. I try not to overdo it, reserving it for emergency situations like dinner and, well, all the other meals. But even then you only last a couple of minutes before calling someone over to talk to you. You love attention, you’ll fuss and shriek and then stop to turn and look at me to see if Im watching you. I swear your father does that exact same thing. One thing I haven’t mentioned here yet is how, from even your earliest days home from the hospital, you pee as soon as we take off your diaper. This honestly happens at least once a day, sometimes every time we change you. We used to have a pretty little cover on your changing pad, but now we just leave it bare plastic, since we never seem to time it so there is a diaper underneath you when it happens. Im hoping this will make potty training a bit easier? There has got to be some benefit to this.


The most exciting thing this month was a trip to Bermuda! The weather was perfect and we took you to the beach. You did surprisingly well sleeping in new places, except of course for the airplane. You are completely over your newborn quality of sleeping the entire flight. Instead, you prefer to wiggle, arch your back, and try to find anything within arms reach to entertain yourself. Bermuda was great though, we somehow managed to not get a single picture of us having forgotten our camera. The best part of the trip is that we tricked you into thinking you were still in Texas so you slept until 10am every morning!


After five months I have come to the conclusion that you are not a sleeper. You need sleep, certainly, and quite a bit too, but you just absolutely hate to do it. You wake up at every opportunity, and resist sleep with every particle of your being. Its still quite typical for you to wake up at the 45 minute mark for most naps, sometimes you talk to yourself for only a couple minutes before drifting back off again (often for several hours) or sometimes you scream bloody murder before you drift off again. Rarely will I give up and go to you because I know you need the sleep, and the more I go to you the less likely you will learn to sleep on your own and get the sleep you need. These sleep battles are the hardest thing Ive experienced as your parent. Sure, the first couple weeks with you I was walking around in a fog, but that stuff went away and never came back. The sleep battles continue and don’t seem to go away, and I fear are something we will be working on for maybe years to come.


Overall this was a pretty good month. You have been to a ton of parties, several wedding events in Bermuda, then Thanksgiving, and Holden’s baptism. Night after night of parties with you, when everyone is ohhing and ahhing over how cute you are, the one thought that always goes through my mind is how lucky I am to be the one that gets to go home with you. I get to keep you, and squeeze you and blow kissies on your neck. I get to go into your room in the morning and see the look of pure joy on your face when you see me.

I love you, baby girl.


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