Seven months

Hudson was all over the place for this month’s photo! He did not want to sit still, and would much prefer to bounce up and down, arch up into a standing position, or crawl forward and hurl himself toward the floor face-first. He’s a ball of energy right now–with lots of goofy grins to match.

And as he gets older, I’m afraid these monthly posts are getting longer and longer. Hudson is just so much more engaging each and every day and I want to remember it all!

You may have guessed from an earlier post that (erratic) sleep continued to be a dominant theme in his sixth month. Not that the battle is over, but we’ve gotten to a better place and can at least  laugh a little at the frantic pace with which we would find ourselves flipping through sleep books at 10pm these past weeks, trying to find the right answer for how to respond when he (inevitably) would be wide awake at 4am. Or about the ridiculous time when he woke up in the wee hours after I had snuck past his crib to get into the bathroom, trapping me in there for 45 minutes while he worked on falling back to sleep and during which time I did my best to fall asleep in the bathtub!

He sleeps unswaddled now; we traded in the beloved miracle blanket for a Baby DeeDee sleep sack and went cold turkey. A few false starts where we doubted the decision and one rough night and he was back to falling asleep with no trouble at all (he’s really good at that part).

He’s filling out and has cute little wrinkles on his wrists and thighs, but thankfully still fits in the mini crib. We did have to lower it, however. He can sit up on his own and has pulled himself to standing once or twice (like during this photo session!) It’s crazy to walk in, however, and see him–way down low–practically touching all the sides and remember how vast the space looked when he was a teeny newborn, all swaddled up like a baby burrito.

We have been trying more new foods and are going to be introducing protein soon. He has been game for everything so far, though he usually looks puzzled and a little concerned at first with every new flavor. We have learned that he loves bananas most of all and that they lead to stinky banana breath, and that avocados are especially stinky in other ways. Less successful so far has been a sippy cup for water to accompany the solids, but we have time.

We joined the Y and can literally dash across the street in our swimsuits to use the pool. You might recall that it was a big hit. My favorite activity there so far is the sing-along class: Hudson is all eyes (and ears) and seems fascinated by the other babies. The man on Wednesdays writes for Sesame Street and is just the coolest, too–singing songs like “Sweet Child of Mine” and “Beautiful Boy” along with the just-for-kids fare. Hudson started wailing when all the kids first started shaking the rattles, trying to climb into my hair it seemed, but as soon as the shock was over he was way into it! I am still working up to using the babysitting there for a full hour (it’s just $5), but our first trial went well: I used the showers and took the opportunity to actually blow-dry my hair.

Around the middle of January, he started rolling around like crazy, using that maneuver to get around, and at the end of the month I watched in amazement as he pulled himself across the floor to get to a favorite toy (a rattle resembling a phone of the sort he’ll likely consider an antique). Now he pulls himself up onto his knees (usually with the incentive of getting either to me or to the diaper wipes box–equally appealing), but he still prefers to drag his legs around.

Animal sounds make him smile (like “Cockadoodledo” in Barnyard Dance, or “Buzzzzzzz” in Mr. Brown Can Moo), and he closes his eyes and softly giggles when puffs of air hit his face (like when you say “woof woof”) or when my bangs brush against his forehead. He still gets really excited if you start to get dressed while standing above him, shrieking with excitement over the scarf or sweater that will be waved over his head. This usually leads to a session of peek-a-boo.

I’m working on using words rather than sounds when playing such games with him. I have a tendency to make razzy or kissy click noises and Aron teases that I’ve delayed his language skills. Of late, Hudson goes around clicking his tongue and spraying me with his own, imitative razzies. Non-stop.

Actually, I think he might be fluent in French. If I whisper “Donne-moi un bisou,” he might sort of purr and then plant his open mouth on or near mine in a gesture I’m sure is meant to be a kiss. (Right? Fluent, see? In French and perhaps an African language using the click consonant.)

Not a kiss, but a similarly slobbery gesture: sometimes when I read him Goodnight Moon before bed (part of our nightly routine of bath, book, singing “I Will” and dimming lights, nursing, then Goodnight Moon over the crib), he tries to suck on my chin. It’s a challenge: saying goodnight to kittens and mittens with a little baby sucking on your chin without cracking up.

But while February was full of happy memories, it was also a tough month. At least it started out rough. The sleep debts and long days alone with Hudson were taking their toll and I felt down in the dumps–and guilty for it, too, especially when everyone on the street stops you to remind you to appreciate every second because “it goes so fast.” (There’s a funny article about this phenomenon that I’ve seen circulating). Having hit a wall, Aron sent me out for some alone time and it occurred to me that I could probably count on one hand the times I’d really gone out without the baby since he was born. It was so wonderful (those on Instagram may have seen some photos from my trip to DryBar) and I should be sure to do that more often, but it’s hard to split off on weekends when I want to hang out, all three of us. Aron, thank goodness, is starting a less arduous rotation next month. It’s so much easier when we’re together.

Finally, (and on a related note because it felt like a re-boot for my mood), we went to St. Lucia! Hudson got his first passport stamps, swam in the sea, crawled around in his very own room, and slept in the shade on the beach (I nursed him to sleep for just about every nap and we took the opportunity to work on setting some sort of sleep clock). And most notably, he came home with teeth! On the plane ride over, we rubbed his gums and discovered ridges! By the time we came home (and painfully, on the ride home I believe) they fully broke through. His expressions seem to change daily as he figures out what to do with the new sensation of having teeth. Happily, many of those involve smiling.

[see all monthly photos, here]

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