Thursday, April 3, 2014

Letters to Serene: 6 months

serene joy at 6 months
My dear Serene Joy,

Happiest of half birthdays, my little love! This past month has been about honing the developmental milestones you gained the previous month. Your heightened curiosity has led you to play on your own for longer stretches of time since you turned 22 weeks. You love play time in your pack n' play and on your mat in the living room. You're content to play with anything within reach, whether they're toys or a pack of wipes. However, you prefer Cosette your fox friend since we introduced her to you at 24 weeks, and Sophie le giraffe most. Your favorite activity during play time is rolling around and about. If we put you down on your blanket in the living room, you'll have rolled yourself to the opposite end of the room within seconds. Your primary mode of transportation this past month has been rolling around, but you also deftly scoot around on your tummy to grab objects. Rolling and scooting has allowed many an adventure on the carpet, against the wall, and around furniture. No matter where you are, you wiggle madly. When you're nursing, your legs climb my arms, and your hands explore my face. You think it's hilarious to stick your fingers in my mouth. Diaper changes have become a battle since you turned 25 weeks last week because you'd rather flip over to explore your changing area than stay still to receive a fresh diaper. You roll around in your sleep too, waking up at times because you landed on your face or your limbs got caught in the crib's bars, which contribute to a rude awakening. After we detangle or flip you over, you resume snoozing.

Thankfully, your sleep regression ended before you turned 22 weeks and you're sleeping through the night in your crib again. You're back to usually waking up between 5-7am for a diaper change and quick feeding before you knock out again for 2-3 hours (on our bed because your mama and papa are too tired to put you back in your room at that point). During the day, you whine to let us know it's naptime. You rub your blanket against your face as we pat you on your bum and hold you close until you fall asleep. Your daddy loves napping with you for that reason, because you love our proximity to you while you do so.

You went through a growth spurt at 24 weeks, and nursed more often. You're still exclusively breastfed, though you've been telling us loud and clear that you can't wait to start solids. During mealtimes, you eye our food with utter fascination. You make lightning fast attempts to grab our food, which makes holding you on our laps during meals an adventure and a test of our own dexterity. You eye a piece of food travel from plate to mouth, and sometimes even jump and whine because we're cruel not to share with you. The doctor told us to wait until after your 6 month appointment to start solids, which I wasn't opposed to (for the sake of putting off stinky diapers as long as possible). You mastered sitting up this past month, and can sit for longer periods of time, which you love. You get so thrilled by the vantage point the position offers that you throw your head back in excitement, which means that you land on your back. Because you're sitting up well enough now, we just got you a high chair and feeding supplies, and shall be giving you your first food this weekend since we got the green light from the doctor at your appointment this afternoon.

At six months, you weigh 14 lbs 15 oz and are now 26 inches long (1 inch longer than last month). You're still wearing size 2 diapers, 3-6 month clothes, and some 3 month clothes. You wear size 2 shoes now, and are still using your newborn bathtub that fits in the sink (although you're getting too long for it so we'll be transitioning you to a bigger tub that sits in the bathtub this month). Your hair is still really fine, and we pray for you to grow more hair on your head pretty often. This past month, you developed a double eyelid on your left eye. You had faint double eyelids when you were born but they disappeared within a few days. Your double eyelid on your left eye appeared at 22 weeks and has been here to stay. We're waiting for the double eyelid on your right eye to emerge, and until then, your left eye seems bigger than your right eye. Your daddy likes to tease that you have my eyes because when I smile, my right eye looks smaller than my left eye. For now, we'll be eye twins, but I sure hope your other eyelid shows up soon.

But really, we can't believe we've been blessed with you in our lives for six whole months already. At the same time, we can't imagine what life was without you. You are the joy of our little family. No matter how discouraged your daddy and I may be, we take one look at you and cannot help but smile at your giggly and goofy self. God uses you to remind us that momentary afflictions shall always pass, for you exude exuberance, being as quick to smile and laugh as ever. Your shining personality is evident; everyone, even strangers, mentions how friendly and happy you are. We like to encourage your grins and giggles. I played peek-a-boo with you at 22 weeks, and you laughed really hard for the first time. You also fancy dancing with us while Mary Poppins Pandora plays in the background. We like to think you love Frozen too (only because your daddy and I have been obsessed with it ever since we watched it when you were 24 weeks). We're guilty of playing the songs for your enjoyment nonstop. You're pretty much content when you're around other human beings, though your mama and papa are still your best buddies. You pant and jump up and down in excitement and reach your arms out to be held when you see either of us. It makes us feel pretty special that you prefer us. It is an absolute joy to love you and  ascertain that you reciprocate our love. I wonder if this is but a shadow of what our gracious God feels when we seek to love Him by His grace. He is teaching me so much of what it means to love Him through you, little love. Praying that you'd come to know and love Him too.

Love you so,

P.S. Serene Joy at 0, 1234 ,and 5 months.

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