07 November 2009

13. Enough said.

Your first birthday seems like it was two years ago instead of just one month ago. Time felt like it contracted and slowed down to the speed of caramel dripping in the last month. Maybe it is because we have been through so many crazy weather patterns that it doesn't feel like a mere month has gone by - snow then beautiful Indian summer days then frost warnings then warm again. Fall has finally come and gone but did so with the most gorgeous display of leaves I've seen in years.

You seemed to sense you turned one and decided that a few days after your birthday you would announce with great fanfare the arrival of the Temper Tantrum. Sure you could be fussy and whiny and twisty when annoyed but you have now taken your temper tantrums to a whole new level. These entail throwing yourself on the ground at the slightest provocation and screaming your head off or crying hysterically. They extend into the middle of the night when you wake up mad as hell that you aren't getting the bottle you think you need and you throw yourself around the crib like a fish out of water wacking your head against the rails and giving yourself little bruises. These tantrums are sometimes amusing but a lot of the time frustrating and distressing for your parents. What happened to our relatively sweet tempered happy child? Many many discussions and emails with other parents later, we have figured it out: you are one and there is nothing we can do about it.

But the month hasn't been all bad, in spite of the fact you decided to wake up nearly every other night around 1.00 or 1.30 or 2.00 and cry for hours on end. (We finally invested in some ear plugs and great god they are awesome - you will read this someday and be appalled that we wore ear plugs so we didn't have to listen to you but you will also have a child of your own someday and then realize why we did it.)

We dressed you up as a little polar bear for Halloween and you looked unbelievably adorable. We all stayed home and watched the Utah game and handed out candy, which is my favorite part of Halloween. It was a much better Halloween than last year when you were still screaming through the night. The downside to Halloween was that it signaled the end of daylight savings and we gained an hour. My whole life I have enjoyed this additional hour and now it's ruined. I think every single one of my parent friends agreed with this assessment because Facebook was filled with status messages like "So and So hates daylights savings." "So and So has been up since 5.00 am and I am going to die." The extra hour was brutal for everyone. You were up at 7.00 but it felt like 6.00 to us. You took a horrible nap and woke up at 12.30. This meant we had seven hours until you went to bed, which felt like 7 million hours. In desperation we went to the Zoo at 3.00 in the afternoon and rode the train for the first time. You absolutely loved it and laughed hysterically the entire ride.

But the biggest news is that you are walking. When I started writing this post this afternoon you had taken five steps at Little Gym that morning, your highest total to date. Until today you still cruised around the edges of everything and lunging forward to the next stable object to grab onto. But in the last few days, you had started to cautiously step out into the ether where there was nothing to grab onto. But you got up from your nap and Claire and Abby and Gwen and Chloe and their moms came over to kill a few hours and you actually walked. You took about ten definite steps with about half of them this adorable side step. Valerie and Amy and I all cheered and clapped and it seemed sweet that they were to see you achieve this huge milestone because they've known you since before you were crawling. And then after they left you tried out walking again. And again when your dad got home and we cheered some more. You look more and more pleased with yourself as your worry about falling seems to fading rapidly.

So I am trying to really fix in my mind how adorable you are when you crawl because you won't do it for much longer. You have been a champion crawler since the day you finally figured it out. You are so fast that sometimes you trip over your hands in your haste to get somewhere and your little bottom swings back and forth and when you are excited you laugh hysterically as you crawl towards something you want.

Thanksgiving is a few days away and last week at Little Gym your teacher asked us to tell everyone what we were thankful for about our kiddos. I was first and so I blurted out how thankful I was for all the ways you have changed my life for the better. But your dad and I are thankful for so many other things about you. We are thankful for your wonderful laugh and your smiles when we play with you. We are so glad you are healthy most of the time and seem like a pretty happy kid. We are thankful for the big kisses you give dad when you go to bed at night, for the hilarious things you do like wiggling into our laps when we read to you. We are thankful for you making us into a family. Everything seems sweeter and more poignant and more achingly joyous this year with you in our lives.

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