by Ashley Weeks Cart
Hey, would you mind sitting down a moment while I share some thoughts on the past month of your life? No? You’re going to bear crawl at the speed of light across the room and then shove small hazardous objects in your mouth while balancing on two legs and attempting to pull large pieces of furniture on top of you? How fun for mom and dad! That’s not nerve wracking in the least! I am really digging these grey-haired highlights.
I’m just going to come out and say it. We’re on Cart Suicide Watch 2012.
What? That’s offensive? I’ve crossed a line? No joking about death in relationship to one’s baby? No suicide jokes?
Look, I’d use a better metaphor if I had one. In fact, I went back in my archives and read the 10 month birthday letter I’d written to Addison to see what analogies I may have made in reference to this developmental stage. And ya know what? In that birthday letter I was raving about Addison’s 12 hour marathon sleep habits and you, Miss Kaki, are in a routine of awaking at 3am and screaming bloody murder until 5:30am. You’ve slept through the night a total of five, that’s one hand, times in your 10 months of life. I’m going to go ahead and use basic SAT reasoning and say that one of these things is not like the other. So any analogies I may have used to describe Sunny’s behavior are just not adequate to capture your extreme, living-on-the-edge approach to life.
I’m making it sound like you’re a little monster. But oh my dear, the flip side to your attempts at finding the most interesting means of taking your own life and the screams that make it sound like we’re sticking needles in your toes in the middle of the night is the most outrageously wacky, joyous, absurd, goofy smiled personality.
You’re a true mimic like your Auntie Kimmy and Doda. You watch our every move and I find you clapping with pride. High fiving. Trying to put the cap back on your cracker container. Loading the kid-sized laundry machine with toys. Offering kissing and hugs and neck nuzzles. Patting the dogs. Crawling in and out of the cardboard house, opening and shutting the door with glee. Waving hello or goodbye. Dancing to any beat that hits your ears. Raspberry-ing food across the room. Weeding the garden. Kicking and splashing in the tub. Flipping through pages in your books.
Girl, you are one smart cookie.
We couldn’t be prouder. Or more overwhelmed.
This has been another wild month, which is why this letter is over four days behind, with my biggest work event and Ursa’s amputation overshadowing many of your amazing developmental milestones. You have two top teeth! You’re eating adult food – scrambled eggs and noodles and raspberries, oh my! You’re standing, unassisted for going on minutes, plural! You take steps when we hold your hands! I fear that you will be toddling boldly around the house by the time I write to you next month.
Perhaps that’s why you gravitate to such extreme behavior. It’s the only way you can compete with all the chaos this household has to offer.
Whatever the reason, I love you all the more for holding your own among the pack. You are you. The youest you. I don’t know how else to describe it. But you are just so you. Unabashedly. Unapologetically. Loudly. Boldly. Determinedly. You.
Sounds like a few other women in this family, eh?
And while you delight in being an extreme yoga baby while nursing during the day (and with the appearance of those new chompers, ouch! Admittedly, we’re nursing less and less), I get moments of utter calm and stillness when we nurse in the evening. Looking back at my Instagram feed from this past month, it is absolutely filled with images of you, nursing, with those stunning, big blue eyes gazing my way.
And, despite all the chaos, that is how I will remember these past four weeks, my love. In fact, that is how I survived these past four weeks. Utterly frozen with disbelief and awe and love for you and those pretty blue eyes.
I’m so glad that you are you. And no one else.
Happy 10 months, my Kaki baby.