Sunday, April 14, 2013

Monster is 18 months old

Dear Monster,

Well, we made it through 18 months now...

What are you doing right now? Compared to 6 months ago, A LOT. You are always on the move. You are more steady while sitting and can get up into a seated position by yourself. You tend to do it “the wrong way” but at least you are doing it. You like to keep your legs bent out instead of in and we really need to keep working on using your flexor muscles instead of extensor muscles. The W sit is becoming quite prevalent in our household and I don’t know how to stop you, other than just staying on top of you 24 hours a day... which isn’t possible. All I can do is try to fix your legs each time in hopes that one day it will click. You are inching along with crawling. A lot of the time you do a modified army crawl but at times you will do the “correct” reciprocal crawl. At any point, you do get where you want to go. We’re working on standing and have you in the stander and you don’t hate it. You can stand by yourself for like 5 seconds at the couch before toppling over, but have yet to actually pull yourself up. Though, you will kind of stand up if I am holding your hands. Still working with Katie, Emily, and Mary Jo through the school district and will be starting with PTS (Pediatric Therapy Services)  for the summertime.

You’ve got 9 teeth with 3 molars coming in right now. The amber teething necklace seems to be helping, at least I can’t imagine what life would be like without it.

You are a tall skinny girl, though not compared to the other kids your age. You wear 12-18 month pants for the length but 9 month for the waist and 12-18 month tops/onesies for the length. I swear you could wear some 9 month shorts and probably will once the summer actually shows up. I am just waiting for the days when I don’t have to try to keep your pants up. Maybe I should learn to sew and take in all the waists of your clothing?? Maybe. We got you your first real pair of shoes this last month, size 3 but they are still too big. Some of the soft-soled size 2 fit but others don’t because of your fat feet... just like mama. Still in size 3 diapers and I don’t see that changing any time soon, unless you hit a HUGE growth spurt in the next couple of months. Your 18-month well visit is next week, so I can find out your actual height and weight then.

Eating is as frustrating as ever since you aren’t feeding yourself or drinking by yourself yet. You drink whole milk out of the bottle just fine if we are holding it for you but if you drink from a different spout (not the bottle nipples), you forget how to swallow. Sometimes you will reach for food on your tray and eat it, but most often it just sits there or you smoosh it in your hand. If I help you bring your hand with food to your mouth, you kind of get the idea and will take a bite. I want to work on this specifically with PTS so that by the time you’re 2, you are feeding yourself! Your favorites are still sweets – just like mama, and oatmeal, grilled cheese, and buttered bread. I’m having a hard time finding things to feed to you and will be looking for advice/inspiration once we get started with PTS. I’m going to try the Baby Lead Weaning Cookbook, hoping that you are getting to the development where you can start to eat those kinds of foods. Let’s work hard for the next few months, okay Monster?

Sleeping is hit or miss. We rock you to sleep and you will fall asleep pretty well for naps/bedtime. However, once you wake up, you sometimes cannot fall back asleep and will either sit there awake in your crib for hours or just scream bloody murder. I never know what to do with you at that point. The easiest thing for all of us is to hold you until you fall asleep again and I know it’s not always the right idea. I think we may have to start sleep training/cry it out sooner than later, but really I just want you to sleep and when I put you down awake, awake you stay...

It seems like a lot to ask of you all at once, sleeping, eating, moving, thinking, learning... but I know you can do it and You will do it, in your own time. As frustrating as it is in the moment, when I look at the big picture, I really can see how much progress you have made in the last few months. And I know you will continue to do big things. Keep it up Monster! I love you.

Always and forever,

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