Friday, March 18, 2005

9 Months

Dear Vivian:

Today you are 9 months old. If someone had said to me, when you were two weeks old, "Cherish this time. Before you know it, she'll be 9 months old," do you know what my response would have been? Try this: "Nine months? It will be a miracle if she lives that long because this sleep deprivation is killing me! Killing me, I tell you! But yeah, I'll cherish this. Whatever, lady."

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Guess what? You are a miracle baby, because here you are, 9 months old! And I'm still living and breathing and occasionally smiling! And even though Blogger just ate my stunningly beautiful post about you, I'm still here! Saving at every sentence which makes posting really really tedious, but still here! Completely pissed off and un-imaginative since all my creative juice was spent on that last post, but still here!

Wait, this is supposed to be about you. So, 9 months old. Here's what's going on this month, Viv:

You have improved your crawling skills. While you have yet to manage the all-fours thing, you do get around much more quickly these days, inching your butt in the air and pushing your torso ahead of you like you're playing shuffleboard. Occasionally you do get up on your knees for a few seconds before the sheer weight of your body tumbles you back down. What you lack in beauty, though, you make up for in speed, as it takes no time at all for you to cross the entire room. I guess it is just a matter of time before you are crawling like a real baby.

You are still eating solid foods, and showing a remarkably sophisticated palate, enjoying almost everything Mama offers. (Except green beans, of course. Peas, you love. Green beans, not so much.) As much as you enjoy food, apparently your constitution is having some difficulty with it, as you are covered in excema. I'm sure this is very itchy and not at all comfortable for you, but more importantly, it shadows your cuteness. This is no good. You are the cutest baby around, but no one can tell, because your face is marked by patches of excema. Fortunately for you, Daddy took some good photos at the beginning of the month so I can post them here without fear.

Vocabulary-wise, we haven't seen too much going on. You just don't seem in a hurry to speak actual words. You do like singing, though. Recently you discovered a very dainty high pitched "ah" tone that you like to sing, interspersed with the occasional "bwha, mwah, enhhhh". Right now, I can hear your father singing back to you in the other room: "You smell, ah. A little pooh, pooey. Pooh pooey, ah ah bwah. Ah, ah poo." You have also learned how to screech. Ouch. Who knew such a loud and uncomfortable noise could come from such a small baby? Fortunately, you use this new "word" of yours sparingly, and so maybe we won't have to send you back after all. When you are not talking, you breathe heavily. Really. Like Darth Vader. That's right. When you are happy--you smile with your mouth wide open and pant like a Star Wars villain.

I must mention: you are flexible. Rubberman could not stretch the way you can. I put you down, sitting, on the floor, and in two seconds you are doing a complete split, then two seconds after that you have lowered the top half of your body to the floor in some sort of advanced yoga move. I'm sure it has a name, but since Downward Dog flumoxes your completely inflexible mother, I will never know. Daddy thinks you will be a gymnast one day, as you are forever tying yourself up in these amazing contortions. Mommy would be so proud if you were. But I am a bit taken aback: not only does Mommy have zero flexibility, I also missed the day they handed out grace and beauty. I think you need those things for gymnastics. You will get from me fairly decent coordination, scrappiness, and speed, but these are traits better suited to games like, say, lacrosse, or soccer. Fortunately, your father gave you flexibility, and I am searching through our family tree for grace and beauty. So far I'm not having much luck, but your great-grandmother's name is Grace, so maybe that counts. And another great-grandmother, while not what anyone would call sporty, definitely always looks put together, even at 90. So maybe the beauty will come from her.

Whenever I pick you up, you stick your legs out in a mid-air split, then wrap them around me with a vice grip as I lower you to my hip. I love this lower-body hug! If you are especially excited, you bounce up and down, then kick out your ankles while still gripping me with your thighs. And make your singing ah sound. I have to smile every time, and sneak a kiss against your cheek.

You are teensy. I am not surprised by this, as I am small. I keep thinking, though--is this the only trait I am going to pass on to you? Being small? So far you have eschewed all my genes but this one in favor of your father's. I'm just not sure that was the right pick. Surely there is something else useful I could have provided for you. Although you are 9 months old, you fit easily into 3-6 month size clothes. Your father calls you "pinner", but I relish your tiny little body.

You were born with handfuls of really dark, almost black hair. It started falling out around 4 months and some of what has grown back in is blonde. When you are nursing, I scrutinize your scalp, practically counting the blonde hairs, in hopes that maybe by some miracle you will become a tow-head, and people will recognize you as my daughter after all.

Oh, but this doesn't really matter. I don't care who you look like or who you take after. Your father is hot, and funny, and has these gorgeous blue eyes that sparkle when he smiles. You could do worse than take after him. But you are Vivian, after all, not Daddy, and not Mommy. You are everything we ever imagined and nothing we ever dreamed of. Vivian, you are the dawn to my midnight, the lime in my margarita, the purr in the kitty cat, the sun after a storm. Watching you change and grow is like opening so many gifts on Christmas morning. I love you.


Rachel said...

What a cutie pie! Such a great picture. I miss the beach.

Nony Mitchell said...

Great picture...alright you convinced me I am going to have to post a pic or two of my little darling...I had been avoiding it, but it looks like it would be fun.

Nice blog...very well done.

Amy B. said...

That was a really beautiful post.

trisha said...

Really, really beuatiful post.

My son didn't look a thing like me for over three years. But he does now. Ha.

Thank you for writing this. Very touching and sweet.

Anonymous said...

Hi. I'm visiting from blogxchng. What a wonderful entry. And your daughter is just lovely! :) groovebun ny

Suzanne said...

What a lovely post! She is quite adorable.