Wowza, Wallace! You are five months old today. I’m sorry to say that I neglected to post updates for months three and four! You and your brother and work have been keeping me busy, and I just didn’t get it done. The past few months have been great, though. You have been growing, growing, growing. In so many ways.
I am watching you right now on the monitor taking a nap in your crib, a little bit in disbelief. You have been asleep for longer than an hour already, and I haven’t had to help you out at all! This is a new skill for you, and I’m hopeful that you get more and more of these long stretches of sleep during the day. Your nighttime sleep has had its ups and downs over the past few months. You were sleeping longer stretches, and then you became more wakeful again, and now you seem to be stretching your wakings back out again. We are just along for the ride and trying to support you as best we can. We briefly worked on getting you out of the swaddle, but that was a bust. So you’re back in it for now. You still sleep much better with it, and at least lately you haven’t been making it your mission to break free of it.
Anyway, you have these amazingly plump cheeks that are only matched in beauty by your chunky thighs. At your 4 month appointment you weighed 17 pounds! You are already wearing 6-9 month clothes, and some of them are getting tight! You have managed to roll from your tummy to your back a handful of times, but lately you don’t seem interested in doing it. You are quite obsessed with your feet, so you more enjoy laying on your back and grabbing your feet and rolling to your sides and back again. When you are on your tummy, you like to cruise around in circles and scooch yourself forwards and backwards and push up on your elbows. You are such a strong dude! Oh, and you have teeth! You were so drooly for so long, and then finally, your bottom two front teeth popped through the gum.
You are very playful. You love your exersaucer, which has so many different toys for you to explore–nearly always with your mouth. You are just about too big for your playmat, as you have been coming close to pulling the arches down onto yourself by yanking on the toys. You are starting to sit up to play too, though not quite by yourself yet. You can tolerate sitting upright for quite awhile, but if you lean too far in one direction, you topple. You do an amazing job grabbing toys. You have this intense look when you’re concentrating, and your movements are much more controlled than I expected they would be at this age–even with rather small things, like your pacifier.
Your favorite thing to do, by far, is to watch Marshall play. The only time I can get you to laugh is when I tickle you. You are, by the way, very ticklish! Under your chin, on your belly, your thighs, under your arms. You have an adorable little giggle. But when you are watching your big brother, you are all smiles, squeals, and belly laughs. It is so precious and makes us so happy. And Mars loves to show off his goofy side for you. I hope you two always have such a strong and easy connection.
So I am back to work now, but only part-time. While I was going through orientation you were home with Daddy and Grandma for a few weeks. It was a stressful time, and you struggled with accepting bottles from them, but we all survived. Now I am still able to be home with you most of the time, but a couple nights a week Daddy puts you to bed on his own and feeds you during the night. You have been such a champ with it all. You seem to have a strong preference for me putting you to bed, though, so you’ve given Daddy a pretty hard time most nights. We’ll get there, though. It takes time to adjust to new things, and we’re trying to be as patient as we can.
The biggest change, which is still very new, is that you are exclusively bottle-feeding. I hesitate to say “exclusively” because this is only the third day that you have not fed at the breast. But since it seems to be going well and you are not showing any signs of missing the breast, I think we will probably stick with it. I am still trying to process this decision and will blog about that at a later date. It was definitely not an easy decision. And a very emotional one for me. I hope that I can at least continue to give you breastmilk until you turn one, though. This experience of feeding you has really challenged me and taught me a lot about you and me and parenting and making family-centered decisions. So…more on that later.
You are also already eating some solids! I was hesitant to start this early, but we were curious about whether you might be ready for them, and knowing that you’re getting some calories by spoon in the evening has taken some stress off of those nights when you refuse to take a bottle from Daddy before bed. With your pediatrician’s blessing, we started with oatmeal. You love it! We were pretty surprised, to be honest. Marshall didn’t eat much solid food until he was close to 9 months old. For the longest time, he just shoved it back out with his tongue or gagged on it. You open your mouth for the spoon (at least when you’re not trying to grab it yourself), and you swallow food without pushing it all back out. So you’ve now also tried some fruits and veggies. You seem to like pretty much everything! It is just one more way that you are reminding me that you are your own person and that I can’t compare you to your brother or other babies. I hope that as you get older we will continue to do our best to respond to you, as you are.
We love you always, Randy, waller-bug, Acie-boy, Wallace. I can’t believe that the next update I make you will be celebrating your first half-birthday!
Here you are at three and four months old too!