I know that I said your final monthly update would be last month, at 12 months, but you’re still changing and growing so much every day that I feel like if I don’t do this, I’ll never remember all of it.
You’re 13 months old. A whole month past your first birthday.
You and I were both fighting colds leading up to your birthday; mine turned into a sinus infection, and yours into an ear infection. In the midst of that, you came down with a scary high fever and roseola. And then the amoxicillian you were on for your ear infection gave you a rash that lasted about a week. But you seem to be fully recovered, just in time to start working on some new teeth.
You have eight teeth (4 on top and 4 on bottom), but your daddy and I are pretty sure you’re working on your 1-year molars. You’ve woken in the night a few times lately whimpering, which is unusual for you. Plus you’re drooling like crazy and shoving your pointer fingers into the back of your mouth. All telltale signs.
About two weeks after your birthday, you had your last bottle. By the time you turned one, we had you down to just your bedtime bottle, and you were only getting 2 ounces in that one. We decided to just use up the rest of the formula and that would be that. You barely even noticed. I hope your easy-going disposition and adaptability serve you well in life and that you learn to use them as strengths.
You get whole (cow’s) milk at every meal, and you’re slowing starting to take more and more. Your preferred way to drink it is out of a regular glass with a regular straw, but you will take a sippy cup as well. (You drink out of a sippy cup at school.) I try to make sure you get full-fat dairy (Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, or cheese) every day in the meantime.
I was worried about what to do in the mornings once you were no longer getting a bottle so that you didn’t go hungry, since you get up about 6:30 am, but don’t eat breakfast till 8 am. But you’re usually fine to wait, and on the days when you’re hungry, you eat a banana at home and then you’re all set.
Other new developments:
You can now climb up the stairs, and oh how you love to do so.
We only have gates at the top of the stairs (going down to the basement and going down from the second floor), so we have to keep an eye on you when you’re on the main floor lest you be halfway up the first flight if we turn our back for a nanosecond. You also love to turn the corner on the landing and then peer back around to see if I’m following. For some reason this gives you the giggles. I love it.
You aren’t walking yet, but you are cruising. You are loving this new-found mobility. You’ve also, just in the last few days, starting walking behind a push toy. You got a Y-Bike for your birthday, and you had taken to pushing it around on your knees, but one day you just had the stability to push it while on your feet. You cover a lot of ground and go around and around the island that way.
Another very recent new thing: you’re signing! I’ve been using signs with you ever since you started solids (so for more than six months), and while sometimes you would sign “milk” or “all done,” it was always kind of a guessing game, and it was hit or miss. Like, maybe he’s signing milk? But now it’s clear as day. If I ask you if you want more of something, you answer. It’s pretty awesome.
And just today, you signed “water” back to me. Way to go!
You have a few words. I know for sure that you say hi, in addition to mama and dada. And you also say book. You also are definitely trying to say doggie, but it sounds so much like dada that I can’t yet distinguish it. (But you will actually point to Eller and say it, so I know you’re trying to identify the dogs with a word.)
You still love books. If I’m upstairs doing chores, you’re happy to crawl into your room, sit on your floor and look at books.
You also have very clear book preferences. If we try to read one that you don’t like, you close it and push it out of the way. Current favorites are DOG, Little Blue Truck, Eric Carle’s Brown Bear, and Goodnight Gorilla.
You really really love that DOG book.
Mastered Skills (most kids can do)
• Uses two words skillfully — Yes. You say hi (and wave) and say book. (In addition to mama and dada.)
• Bends over and picks up an object — Yes, but certainly not in an elegant way.
Emerging Skills (half of kids can do)
• Enjoys gazing at his reflection — Oh my word, yes. You love to stand up on your changing table and look in the mirror at yourself.
• Holds out an arm or leg to help you dress him — Yes. We do most of our getting dressed standing up these days, and you are very cooperative. It’s pretty helpful!
Advanced Skills (a few kids can do)
• Combines words and gestures to make needs known — No.
• Rolls a ball back and forth — Yes. You love to do this, and you love to throw a ball too.
You are delightful, Harry. There is no other way to put it.
Sometimes I let my mind run and I worry about what our relationship will be like in 10, 15, 25 years. I don’t know why; nothing was ever solved or gained by worry. A few weeks ago one of my friends, who will give birth to her baby boy any day now, said that her primary prayer for her son is that he knows he was loved. That someday when she and her husband are gone that he will know, down to his bones, that they loved him.
And I feel the same way. No matter what happens, you can always count on our love for you. It will never change; never fade; never be conditional. We love you now and forever.