Posts tagged ‘Time’

November 18, 2011

The Glory of Autumn

Entirely because it’s my only experience, it seems to me that autumn is the best time to have a baby, at least in this hemisphere. You’re not pregnant enough the winter before to need a maternity coat. You can get away with flip flops and dresses when you feel enormous in the summer. And after the baby’s born, when you feel like you just want to stay inside all day in yoga pants, you can, because it’s getting cold out, and you wouldn’t want to get the baby sick, now would you?

I’m sure whenever I had my first baby would seem to me to be the best time to do it. But I do have one more reason why autumn (technically the last day of summer) is the best: because a year later, when your little one has just learned to walk, you can take pictures like these:

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November 11, 2011

Daylight Savings Time Is My New Nemesis

To be fair, I didn’t have a nemesis before. But I certainly do now.

Monday of this week (the week after “falling back” an hour, due to daylight savings time), I put Jacob down for a nap at about 4:15. He chattered in his crib for a while and finally fell asleep at five o’clock. From what I know about his sleep cycles, I expected him to wake up at about 5:40 for dinner.

Six o’clock rolled around, and nothing, not a peep from him. Okay, I figured, this is going to be a longer nap—an hour and twenty minutes rather than forty minutes.

By quarter to seven, I still hadn’t heard anything from the little guy. I got hungry, and had dinner as quietly as possible. It was weird that he was still sleeping—and I was already starting to dread the five a.m. wake-up I saw on the other side of this thing—but there was no way I was going to wake up a peacefully sleeping baby. At eight o’clock, still nothing. At this point, I was reflecting on how lucky it was that I’d changed him into some comfier pants before his “nap” started. At least he wasn’t spending the whole night in jeans. How teenager-y of him that would have been! But he already eats like a thirteen-year-old, so maybe I shouldn’t be surprised.

Finally at nine o’clock, I heard him cry and went in to see him. John was working late, and neither Jacob nor I really knew what to do. Should he have dinner? Should I just put him back down?  I gave him some water, and rocked him for the duration of one rosary. I put him back down and after a short cry, he seemed to go back to sleep. At ten o’clock, he woke up again. This time I went in with a snack and water, and for the first time ever, really, he sat on my lap, cradled in my arms like you’d expect a baby to be, and we snuggled. It was peaceful and warm, and I would have stayed there longer if I wasn’t worried about the next morning.

Unfortunately, my concern was well-grounded. All week since, naps and nighttime sleep have been kind of wonky. Which means I’ve felt kind of wonky. I delayed this post until Friday, hoping to have some kind of conclusion about how long it takes a baby to adjust to DST. More than a week if the mama remains unwilling to consent to six a.m. wake-ups. I guess I need to revisit the letter I wrote Jacob last March. His memory isn’t all there yet, so I suppose I can’t blame him for forgetting.

But then again, this is life with a baby—just when you think you have a schedule established, something changes that keeps you from showering for longer than you’d like to admit. Thank goodness for husbands who stick around a little longer in the mornings to help make sense of the day. Let’s hope there’s a better resolution to this before spring!

September 6, 2011

More Firsts!

A monumental event took place in our lives this weekend:  Jacob took his first steps. He did it a couple of times, each time really just trying to get from one handhold to another.  I think of these steps the way Woody thinks of Buzz Lightyear’s flying, that is, as “falling with style.”


Still, whether he likes it or not, the little man is capable of walking on his own.  We’ve been able to see for a week or two that he’s strong and steady enough. He just hasn’t decided that walking is a good or necessary thing.  Or has he?


If you can handle another Toy Story reference today (and why not, really?), sometimes I wonder if Jacob has had some of his “firsts” without us watching.  The first time he came to sit on his own was in his crib, as was the first time he pulled himself up to stand.  Who’s to say that he hadn’t done these things before, and then just lain down again before we came in?


All this begs the question, if a baby takes his first steps, but his parents don’t see them, do they count?


In Jacob’s case, I could kind of see him, but there was an armchair between us.  John was in another room, and Jacob’s aunt got the front-and-center seat.  The joy that burst on her face convinces me that he really did walk, and it really did count—even if I told her otherwise.  Yet these steps didn’t really strike me as intentional.


We’ve had a similar situation with Jacob’s first word.  If you count screaming “Maaaaa! Maaaaaa!” in the midst of crying for food in the middle of the night, then Jacob’s first word was “mama.”  If you don’t, then his first word was “da” for Dad . . . or, later, dog (sorry, John). With words, especially, there’s a sort of time lapse for translation, and we’re just not sure if these count or not.


Turns out, a lot of baby “firsts” happen rather gradually.  A mommy friend and I were talking about the same thing regarding her son’s smile.  Yes, he smiled at about two months, but it’s not like he had a totally straight face and then burst into a giant smilefest.


Growth happens a little bit at a time, and while we can try to record these milestones, the point isn’t really when they happen, but that they happen and that—at some point—we experience them with our children.  That as parents, we get the great blessing of watching our kids turn into the people they will be—smiles, words, and steps in all.

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