Today you are 5 months old and I cannot believe it. You are one month away from being half a year old and I am mystified about where the time has gone. Each day I look at you and I see less and less of that tiny baby and more and more of a little boy. This both saddens and delights me because while I loved the sweet, snuggly new baby phase, I am also so excited to move slowly into the little boy phase.
This last month has been a month of subtle changes rather than terribly big ones. Your fine motor skills are progressing pretty rapidly these days. You see things you want and you grab them, without hesitation. You easily put everything into your mouth and there is an almost endless supply of drool as a result. Last night your grabbed your dad’s face with both hands and put his nose into your mouth, which was both hilarious and kind of horrifying, all at the same time.
You’ve started doing this totally adorable thing with your hand where you flex and extend your fingers one at a time like you’re playing an invisible piano. You do it to feel different textures and surfaces. When you get tired you do it to our faces and it is so cute that I basically melt into a small puddle of goo every time.
You continue to prefer your pacifier over your thumb, but you also still like your thumb, so you have found a way to combine the two. I refer to it as pacifier thumb, but basically you stick your thumb into the hole of your pacifier so you can have the best of both worlds. You usually get your thumb stuck in it, but you are not terribly bothered by that.
You also play another delightfully disgusting game where you see how many fingers you can shove into your tiny mouth at once. It almost always results in gaggery.
This month you also learned, FINALLY, how to roll from your back to your tummy. You have had this 95% mastered for like a month, but you just never lifted your head up to complete the roll. In case you’re keeping track and I forget to write this down anywhere else, you learned to roll from belly to back on September 1st and from back to belly on September 30th. Rolling bookends for September.
You’re also working hard on sitting up, but you still lack the protective instincts necessary to sit, so when you start to tip, you don’t make any effort to stop yourself. This has resulted in many near face plants and a few actual ones, when I don’t catch you fast enough.
My original plan had been to follow all the research and recommendations and wait to start solid foods until you were 6 months old. And then you noticed food. You actually noticed it first just before you hit 4 months, but it was a chocolate cake and mommy doesn’t ever share chocolate cake. But you haven’t stopped since then. You even open your mouth when we do, as if to say that we could go ahead and shovel some into your mouth while we’re at it. So tonight, at 5 months exactly, you will be getting your first solid food- avocado. I hate avocado, so hopefully you’ll be more of a fan than I am. We got your high chair set up last week so you could try it out and you seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. It goes without saying that making noise is a new skill, too.
Sleep continues to be a bit of a battle. You have proven that you can sleep through the night and you did it twice in a row last week. And then we decided to try, for the 800th time, to transition you out of your little bunny bed and into your pack n play. And well, it went better than last time, but you’re still back to getting up twice a night after nearly a full month of only one wake up per night, and often only one wake up after 6-7 hours of sleep. I think we’re going to go back to the bunny bed for one more month and then just do a full transition to your crib. Expect your next letter to be written by a very, very sleep deprived mother.
Your likes this month include: your pacifier, your thumb, pacifier thumb, any kind of toy that is easy to grab, your mom and dad, your Aunt Claire, your swing, Glen (your monkey blanket), your feet, football on tv (mother of the year, I know), sitting, standing and having our full attention at all times.
Your dislikes this month include: taking naps (seriously, you’re killing me, smalls), traffic, when I try to get you to go back to sleep at night without feeding you, the hours between 6 and 8 pm (because you don’t take a decent afternoon nap).
This next month will also be a special one because your Aunt Claire is going to have a baby, so you will have a cousin very close to your age. Granted, the baby is a girl (ew, I know), but I am so beyond excited to watch the two of you grow up side-by-side. I hope you have the friendship that your Aunt Claire and I didn’t find until a few years ago.
You are known far and wide as a happy guy, you smile for just about everyone who smiles at you. Your daycare provider can’t brag enough about how happy you are each day and how you only fuss when you’re tired. And she’s right. You almost never actually cry and when you do it scares me, because you’re otherwise always so jovial. You whine a fair amount in the evenings, but all it takes is a few kisses or lifts and you’re back to your happy self for at least a few minutes.
Your dad and I continue to be just completely head over heels in love with you. You frustrate us on occasion because sometimes you know what you want but we don’t, and sometimes we know what you need and that contradicts what you want, but we are more than happy to tough through it with you. Your smile is the greatest thing I’ve ever seen in my life and I am literally never happier than when snuggling you. Whenever I’m with you, I feel more at home than I have ever been before.
If someone had told me 5 months ago that my heart could feel this full, I don’t know if I would’ve believed them. You have changed my life in every way, and even if I never get a full night of sleep again, I know it will have been worth it. I love you so very much I can hardly find the words sometimes. There’s just no way to explain how happy you have made us, how grateful we are each and every day to be your parents.
Happy 5 months, Elijah. We love you and can’t wait to see what next month brings.