Nine Months and Counting…
On Lila’s nine month birthday, I spent some time reflecting on everything that has changed from April to January.
Actually, that’s not true.
Lila’s 9 month birthday was on January 7th, which was also the first day of classes, AND the premiere of “The Bachelor.”
So on her nine month birthday, I was writing the number “12” on a whiteboard and warning a room full of terrified freshmen, “This is how many students I had to fail last semester.” I was explaining, again and again, why buying the book is necessary for an English course. I was talking about things like idea vs. image, and how to offer critique in a writing workshop without being a total asshole, and why a short story should never end with the line, “And then I woke up.”
And then I came home to a nine month old baby who was fast asleep in her crib, and so I spent a little more time on that birthday watching Sean Lowe, aka “The Bachelor” (btw—my maiden name is Lowe—OMG ARE WE RELATED???) attempt to find love amongst 25 ladies. Or, “ladies,” I should say. I spent most of the night yelling things like, “Let her go, Sean! She’s not there for the right reasons!!!” at my TV.
If you’re curious, I’m pulling for Desiree.
So anyway, Lila’s nine months birthday came and went with little fanfare or reflection on my part.
Over the past week or so, I really have been thinking about it a lot—the fact that she’s over nine months old, that is. The fact that at her next doctor’s check-up, she’ll be a year old. That blows my mind.
And I’d say that I can’t believe it, except that I can. Because when I look at her now, playing with her balls (*edited to add*: I JUST realized how bad that sounds), or crawling at a super-speed across the floor at Little Gym, or standing on her own, crouching to pick up toys, and then standing again without even a wobble…she looks old to me.
I wasn’t around babies much growing up, and I guess I always had this idea in my head that babies were babies for a pretty long time—like, two years. But I look at our “baby” now at not even a year, and I already see the toddler she’s growing into:
A part of me is kind of scared—girlfriend is already pretty stubborn, and willful, and hard-headed as heck. Wonder who she gets that from?
But mostly, I’m just excited.
As a new mom, I felt guilty for a long time that I didn’t love the newborn phase as much as I felt I should have. Now that we’re past that phase, there are parts that I miss about it, and sometimes I feel sad that she doesn’t look like this anymore:
…but mostly I’m just glad that part is over. Because now the real fun is starting. On a daily basis, Lila frustrates me probably at least a hundred times. Luckily, she makes me laugh a hundred and one. If I’m being honest, there are still times when I think, “Why did we ever thinking have a child was a good idea?” I’m sure that will never end. In fact, my parents probably think that about me sometimes, ha.
But as soon as I feel like I’m on the brink, she pulls me back. She crawls around in nothing but a diaper, squealing and humping (truly, that’s the only word for it) the bed pillows. Or she holds her arms out in some bizarre Frankenstein (I know, I know—Frankenstein was the doctor!!) impression during dinner. Or she says “Mama”:
…and my heart melts. Actually, “melt” isn’t the right word. Rather, it swells. And every time it swells, I love her more and more and even more.
Happy nine months, sweet girl!