I started this sometime in July (Sky was 8 months):
We lowered Skylar's crib today. There are three levels. We started our girl on level one and Matt was wanting to skip down to level three today. I instantly said, "No way!" Not because it wouldn't make sense to move it all the way down and not have to do it when she's standing up and trying to escape, but because I felt like moving it to level three was somehow going to speed up time. So she's sleeping in her level two-height crib right now, and all is OK in my world. So funny how my motherly irrationality kicks in, like if we went straight to level three Skylar would start crawling and climbing and walking this week. But that was my thought process...
I think I started to say Sky was in a magical stage at five months but now I think "No, no, no, now she's in a magical stage." But really...she's not mobile. She smiles uncontrollably at her mom and dad (I joke with Matt that we cannot look directly at her, that cuteness just shines so bright). She's made up entirely for the early weeks, when we did everything we could to make her happy and she gave us nothing. Her smiles are incredibly rewarding and she is entirely too generous with them. If she continues to charm us we her crinkle-nosed smiles throughout these early years, we're in trouble. Spoil-her alert.
|Smiling her way through Leiden in Holland.|
|Sky's first jumping pic.|
Though often called "cutting teeth" apparently what happens is hormones are released within a baby's body that cause some cells in the gums to die and separate, allowing teeth to emerge. Though teeth slicing through gums sounds far more painful, this gum-dying process must be quite painful too. Fortunately, we were in Paris, and Skylar had all of the best teething breads at her disposal. Matt and I joked that she would be ruined by this untouchable French bread, rejecting any variety of bread made in America we give her. haha. Thus far, she hasn't been so particular.
|Sky will surely remember Notre Dame...|
|Airplane bassinet. Lifesaver.|
Lessons learned in month nine:
- Oh hey! There's another sleep regression. I was so looking forward to getting back on our schedule once returning home from Europe (a rough nine-hour time change). She was back on schedule for about a week, then, on my birthday, she woke up hysterically crying 20 minutes after her bedtime. Unfortunately, she was with a babysitter because Matt and I were out for my 30th birthday dinner (btw 30 ain't so bad!). Matt and I watched on the monitor (on our phones) as our sweet friend Cory tried to calm Skylar down. I know that's a no-no on date night, but we got some sadistic entertainment out of watching our friend turn on the lights and play with Skylar. haha. She won. She always wins. When we got home, Cory and Skylar were playing in the living room. Skylar gave us so many smiles at 9 p.m., knowing there was something special about being up after dark. I thought it was just a bad luck night for the babysitter, but the trend continues. The past four nights, Sky had woken up in hysterics, 20 minutes after conking out at her usual bedtime. It has taken us anywhere from 20 to 60 minutes to get her back to sleep. Apparently it's the 8-10 month regression caused by separation anxiety. Now, how the heck do you let a baby cry it out when you know the cause of this is separation anxiety? Matt and I can't do it. Not at this age. We go in and wipe those crocodile tears and read to her until she calms down. Rock, read, down in the crib, repeat. Eventually, she rolls to her side and goes to sleep. Perk of this unintentional later bedtime, she sleeps in! 7:20 a.m. right now, and she slumbers on.
- It's OK to go off schedule. I was stressed about taking Skylar to Europe. Mainly stressed about the flight, but also about what the trip would do to her lovely schedule. I have come to the conclusion that most babies are good little humans if they're well-fed, well-rested and well-loved. But I've seen my little human when she's lacking in the food or rest department. She's unhappy. I wasn't sure how naps were going to work in Europe. I added up her sleeping venues and my little love slept in NINE different places over our 12-day vacation. That's including naps in friend's homes/apartments. That's a lot of foreign environments. And most of her naps were 20-minute catnaps taken in the front carrier. Not ideal for her happiness levels, but they sufficed! Despite five teeth creeping up, Skylar still managed to be her joyful self for 95 percent of our trip. And it took about four days to get her back on schedule once we got home. Basically, the lack of routine didn't phase Skylar once we got back home. Would I do it again? Probably not in the next five years. It was challenging. But I'm proud of our little family for making the journey.
- It really does get better and better. Every month I say, "No, this is the best stage!" but as all experienced moms remind me, "It gets better and better." It doesn't necessarily get harder, the challenging areas just shift around. And gosh, the delights of this babe far outweigh the challenges. Let's hope that's the case when she's 15 and embarrassed of her parents simply because we're her parents. What an irrational stage of life-- sorry, Mom and Dad! I thought I was an adult at 15...I knew everything, except for how little I knew. OK, let's not focus on the teen years, this baby stage is pretty dang sweet.
|Train ride to Paris.|