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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Abe: 7 months

Today our baby boy is 7 months old. It's hard to believe that we have known about his existence for less than 2 months. He is a perfect and joyful fit for our family. And we are so grateful that God blessed our family with this addition.
A lot has happened in the last month. Today Abe and I have been home for 3 weeks. It feels like we have been home for months now...and I mean that in a very positive way. It really feels like a distant memory that we were stuck in Oklahoma, but yet it was just a short 3 weeks ago. Some people have asked how Abe has adjusted to all his recent changes. I appreciate that. I think too many people just assume babies are resilient and unaffected by these transitions. My best guess is that he is doing really good. I mean, I don't know what is going on in his little heart and head. But he normally wears a big smile on his face when his immediate family is close by. He absorbs our touches and cuddles, as some children/babies might resist those things if they are afraid to trust a new caregiver. Instead he is very affectionate with us. In fact, if I say to him, "give me kisses", he flashes a big grin and then leans his face in to meet mine. Sweet. He's so so sweet. He is absolutely in love with his big brothers and gives them the biggest smiles. And they are equally in love with him. It's been such a joy to watch these 3 little boys connect and love and bond.
These two big boys are my little helpers. Always eager to lend me a hand in most any way that I ask.
On Saturday night Abe slept through the night (9:30pm-8:00am) in his own room, in his own crib. I was amazed when I woke naturally at 7am to a quiet house. Mind you, that has not happened since. But he's done it once with us so I do know that it's possible for him. He is normally waking somewhere between 3-4am. Currently, we start him in his crib at nighttime and he ends up in our bed, normally close to 4am. I know he probably doesn't NEED that 4am feeding that I am offering him. (At his 6 month appointment his stats were weight: 20lbs 11oz - 90%, height: 27inches - 51%, head circumference: 43cm - 28%) But he sure acts hungry when he wakes. And I'm probably creating some terrible habit that is going to be tough to break, but honestly I'm just not sure what to do about it. I justify it by telling myself that he is the same size (actually 1 pound heavier) as Holden and Pax at this age, but they were taking 8-9oz of formula 4 times a day. He is only taking 6oz of formula 4 times during the day (+ the 5th feeding during the night.) And I've even tried a 6th feeding, by feeding him at 11pm or midnight before I go to bed. But he still seems to wake around 4am even with that late night "dream feed" (a Babywise term for those that know what I'm referring to). Except for that random and beautiful Saturday night this past weekend. This is the first baby that I have rocked. I rock him to sleep at each night and at each nap. It's a sweet, sweet time for us. Sometimes he stares in my eyes as I sing until his eyelids get to heavy to hold them open. And he normally ends up curled up on my chest. I sing, he snuggles and quickly drifts off to sleep. And I've wondered...why in the heck did I not do this with the other boys!!! I love the rocking, singing and cuddling. Precious time for us. I know it may be another hard habit to break. But I feel like it's a very important part of his life right now and he needs this from us. So we are rocking him to sleep and I am enjoying every moment.
Abe is now independently sitting up. I don't even place the boppy behind him anymore because he is at pro at sitting. He is also starting to get up on his knees and rocking back and forth a little. He scoots himself backwards easily, which I remember both of my other boys doing soon before crawling began. He can also rotate in a full circle to get to his different toys. So more excitement should be going on in our house very soon once he is mobile and crawling around exploring on his own. As I posted previously, he loves to clap and is clapping constantly. He is pretty proud of this new skill. He loves to blow raspberries...and sometimes during meal times...ugh. It makes for a nice spray of purees over his high chair tray and often on the feeder (typically me).
We have started solid foods. So far he has had green peas, green beans, blueberries, apples, bananas and peaches. I went in a better order with the first two. This time it was more about what I had available in the freezer to make once I got home. So we started fruits before introducing all the veggies. Oh well. He'll be trying butternut squash and sweet potatoes in the coming week. So far he likes it long as he has his bottle first. I've tried to feed him solids while he's famished and he was devastated and reacted as though I was attempting to poison him with green beans. See for yourself...
Abe adores bath time and playing in the water. He loves to splash and bat at the water. I'm happy to have another water lover. You always hear about parents having to convince their kids to take a bath. My boys would take them twice a day if given the option. Occasionally they take a shower with Jeremy and that is normally a disappointment because they'd rather sit in the bath and play.
He has been teething and chewing since the moment we met him. And almost two months later, still no teeth. It seems as though some of the "eye teeth" will be the first to arrive. He has been a trooper, but yesterday I noticed he had bruised his tongue from all the chewing a biting. :( Abe is starting to master the sippy cup and loves to sip his ice cold water.
Jeremy has been extremely busy with work since we came home 3 weeks ago. I hate that because his time with Abe was already so much more limited than just naturally worked that way since I was the only one caring for him in Oklahoma the majority of those weeks. So it seems as though he has fully bonded to me and that is a great thing. But he has had just a couple of hard times when I haven't been home. Jeremy will have 4 full days at home this week/weekend with us. I hope it will help to strengthen Abe's connection and trust in Jeremy. Obviously we want and need Abe to have a strong connection with both of us for many reasons. I'm planning a weekend away in about 10 days. This was planned long before we knew of Abe. But I just really want Abe to feel complete security and safety at home with daddy and the big brothers. Honestly, I worry about what his little mind will think of my absence for a couple of days. A few people have commented that we fortunately missed the hard part (those first 5 months and sleepless nights). Little do they know about the different challenges faced through adoptions that happen further from birth. And goodness, I would take those sleepless nights in a heartbeat. We surely never wished to miss 5 months of his life. But regardless, it was God's good plan and we are grateful for however he chooses to write our story. Personal history reminds us time and time again that being open to His plan only enriches and blesses our lives in amazing ways. Blessed blessed blessed. While I'm rocking this little love several times during a day, I thank God that he chose us.

1 comment:

Katie said...

Those eyes!! Precious. I think babies do have a loss. Lauren was with her birth mom, then another family for a over a week then us. New voices, new smells. I'm glad he is so sweet. He looks sweet!! My Drew was super sweet just like him and still is just as sweet.