Monday, August 29, 2011

Status report: Maia, Month 4

What a beautiful thing a happy baby is. The smile, the contented gurgles, the almost-giggles when her belly and hands and toes are kissed...the lack of crazy-making crying. Maia has been happy a lot this past month, and that makes all happy.

Her four-month checkup went great, with her big sister holding her hand for her shots, and she's been cleared to be started on cereal. "You may have to," the pediatrician added, because she's 95th percentile on head, height, and weight. Why do we have such huge babies? The six-month pajamas are mostly okay on her, but some were too short (the Circo ones), and the okay ones don't have a lot of room in them. It's time to break into the nine-month clothes box. (Ha! Like I've got them all organized and labeled!)

Sleep has gotten a lot better this month. She now takes one or two naps during the day pretty regularly, and at night will have a last feeding somewhere between eight and nine and get a change, pajamas, and bed in the crib. We're still working on sleep training, so sometimes this involves forty-five minutes of crying and intermittent checks on her, and sometimes it requires only one or two checks before she grumbles herself to sleep, and sometimes she goes down silent and smiling. And sometimes she's already asleep, but that's okay too. Once I started forcing myself to stay awake for her first nighttime feeding, she slept longer intervals in the wee hours, so evidently I've only been depriving myself by trying to nap through that feeding. Ah well.

She does a lot of grumbling and growling at the bottle, and some at the R.I.N.D.S., but she's doing well on both. We did start her on cereal a couple of days ago, and last night she had her "Oh, this is how you eat!" session. At the beginning the food we spooned on her tongue got deposited on her lips as she moved her tongue in vague confusion; at the end she was moving it to the back of her mouth and lunging forward to get the next bite. We're giving her one more day of cereal, and then she can graduate to something fun, like squash or carrots or bananas. Chloë was interested in her cereal and wanted to have some, to the point of telling me not to give Maia any more the other day, so that's another reason to put it away for now. Not that I think she'll be less interested in the squash or carrots or bananas, but maybe we can convince her that her own big-girl versions are tastier.

And last night she slept from eight-thirty to three o'clock. Yay semisolids!

She's sucking and chewing on everything now, and much more interested in toys than she was last month. We have a dragonfly/butterfly (I'm not sure which) that we stole from Eric's mom when Chloë was this age, and Maia adores it. She sits happily in her carrier in the kitchen while we're making dinner, squeezing its crinkly wings and chewing its soft body. She loves her Winnie-the-Pooh mobile and the toys on her little bouncer. She watches Chloë's shows with her, though she's very easily distracted by a toy or a face or a "It's a baby!" with a kiss.

She's such a contented baby now most of the time. I love spending time with her, and I feel guilty that I don't get to do it as much as I did with Chloë...though I'm not positive this isn't better, since she gets Chloë too. She's a little confused when she gets put in Chloë's lap, or held upright to "stand" and hugged hard by her, but she seems to like this not-quite-so-huge bigger person in her life, and Chloë seems to like her. It's all good.

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