Well, here we are again. It's been seven months since I gave birth to Noam and not a day goes by that I don't still feel like I'm living in some sort of dream. Does it ever seem real? I look at him every morning, every evening and every second in between and wonder how we created this human - this human who claps his hands and sings along to songs and flirts with strangers and insists on holding your phone or remote - and I wonder how on earth I got so lucky to call this my reality.
Here's how Noam is doing this month.
We go to the pediatrician every three months now (though we go back tomorrow for his second round of flu vaccine) so I'm not totally sure how much he weighs, but it's somewhere around 21 pounds. He's in almost entirely 12-18 month clothing (I know, how the heck?! baby clothing is so bizarrely incorrectly sized sometimes) and size 4 diapers (oh, by the way, we started using Honest's new overnight diapers last month and they're awesome).
His eyes are still dark blue with a hint of brown - I'm really curious when and if they'll change to completely dark brown - and he's still got just his two bottom teeth. I'm in no rush for him to get more teeth because 1. teething is awful and 2. babies with teeth sometimes bite (while nursing) and, well, it's quite painful.
As you probably know, we started Noam on solids after he'd turned six months old. I have to admit, feeding a baby solids can be kind of annoying in some ways. Sure, we enjoy watching him experience new textures and flavors, but it's a lot of work and more often than not a huge mess. So at this point, we often go several days without solids. I'm very thankful that my milk provides all the nutrients he needs right now, and love that I can satisfy him whenever and wherever we are. But here are the foods he's tried so far: sweet potato, avocado, banana, carrot, quinoa, bread (bagel), plain yogurt, rice. We've also tried puffs (which are awesome for working on dexterity) and teething wafers (which I plan to make myself moving forward). I'm going to work on injecting more veggies into his diet, but for now I'm enjoying the slow pace of solids we've got.
As far as nursing, Noam nurses probably 8-10 times a day, and I've found that he's much more ... let's say, proactive ... about going after milk now. I'm working on teaching him the sign for 'milk' so he can communicate that way until he can say 'milkies' or whatever else he chooses to call it.
Noam's sleeping pretty well! He still wakes a few times a night to nurse but it's not terribly disruptive. He naps three times a day most days but I think he's beginning to drop his first nap of the day as he's becoming less and less interested in it most days. We don't operate on a schedule - just on-demand - so we'll see what he decides to do. And, just for fun, a mom in one of my moms' groups shared this information on baby sleep that I thought was hysterical and incredibly accurate. So now can all stop worrying about whether our babies are sleeping enough.
Activity & Development
I've said it before and I'll say it again: it is remarkable how much babies can change and grow from one week to the next or one month to the next. Noam is still very vocal and now says 'bababa' pretty much all day long. He thinks it's hysterical if we say it, too. He's also increasingly mobile - figuring out how to scooch around or walk his hands over to grab something - and he's begun to intentionally roll around. He's getting ready to crawl and can now push up and spend a little bit of time on his knees before he sits back down. It's clear when we go to classes with crawling babies that he's actively studying them - I swear I can see the wheels turning inside his head - and beginning to imitate them.
Noam also loves to clap and wave - recent developments of his - and sing along during music class. His favorite toys right now are his wooden blocks and egg shakers - he loves to create noise by banging or shaking objects - but he also very much enjoys the non-toys like zippers, tags and tissues. He's super strong and loves to deconstruct (or destruct) things, so actually a tissue box full of tissues is a really fun developmental toy for him.
One thing that's really interesting to me is that Noam now understands when something is taken away from him and he absolutely does not like when that happens. I'm working on teaching him the sign for "all done," so that he can understand that things go away, but right now he pretty much just cries until something replaces what has just left.
Noam's personality is, as most babies' personalities, constantly evolving. This has been, by far, the most rewarding part about being a mom so far - watching and participating in the development of his personality - seeing his growth and being a part of his brand new world.
Going to classes with Noam has helped him develop not only his motor skills but also his personality - his socialization skills and likes/dislikes - but it's also helped me better understand his developing personality. Right now, he seems to like to sit back and observe the world around him before getting involved. He enjoys studying people and, once he's comfortable with them, will let loose.
He loves meeting new people (mostly, though every once in a while a little stranger danger creeps in) and loud, surprising noises (he finds them hysterical) and our doggies (we're working on 'be gentle').
I'll finish up with something new that I've decided to do from now on: share the best part of this past month and the most challenging part.
The best part has been watching Noam go after what he wants. It's clear that he wants to move, so he's figuring out how to crawl. And it's clear that he gets excited about things, so he's figured out how to clap and say 'bababa' and smile and laugh to share that excitement. It's so beautiful to witness. The most challenging part has been trying to redirect him when he insists on reaching out and grabbing our phones or utensils or other not-so-baby-friendly objects. He desperately wants what we have and gets very upset when he's not able to have them, so it's a constant balance (and sometimes struggle) in making sure he's content and learning but also safe.