When Samara was a newborn, I ran into a mother in the post office with an eight-month-old daughter. I remember staring at that baby in awe. Would Samara's feet ever be so big? Would her hands ever be so controlled? Would that baby's shrieks of delight ever sound like my daughter's? The answer? Yes. Samara has big feet, controlled hands and a laugh that could charm Cheney. And yet, she is still a helpless newborn in my mind. How is this possible?
This month my little one has been very focused on verbal development--at the expense of her physical development. This is fine with me because it means that she still gets up on all fours and rocks/humps and I am still able to attend my exercise classes and remain in denial about the need to babyproof our house. A few times she has crawled a little forward, but mostly, she pushes herself backwards. Meanwhile her verbal development has been astounding. Yesterday, I called her father and she kept saying "Dada" "Dada." So I put the phone next to her ear and she said, "Badada" (translation: bye daddy). Then later she was in her high chair, waving her arms above her head, wanting me to take her. She said, "Ho-may Mama" (translation: hold me, mama). Whether these are flukes or whether she is actually speaking remains to be seen, but it has been pretty incredible to watch her go from a little mute-y girl to Chatty Cathy.
She continues to want to explore everything. Her current obsessions include my keys, cell phone, water bottle and glasses--oh, the glasses. She is having a love affair with my glasses. Every morning, she reaches for them, trying to pry them from my face. When she gets them, she opens them, shuts them, licks them. She holds them and cuddles them like a puppy. Now when I take things back from her she protests, screaming until I either give them back or distract her. She also continues to adore the cat and the dog, shouting "GA' "GA" when she sees the dog. Both animals grudgingly tolerate her pats and shrieks until she gets too odd and unrpedictable, at which time they run away.
As fall approaches, she has been wearing more long sleeves again and I have realized that very few, if any, of her old warm clothes fit her. I am at once sad and excited about the changes to my baby. But it is hard to become too melancholy when everyday she becomes more fun, although this past week has been difficult as I think she is teething. Her nose is running, she pulls on her cheeks and ears and she wakes more easily. She appears a bit needier as well. If I even turn my back to her, she starts to sob. I half like it--it is nice to feel needed--and half wish she would pass this phase so I could again leave her in the gym daycare or get a cup of coffee while she is in the exersaucer.
I have been trying to get out more--to more playgroups, singalongs, parks and other social events. This is mostly because she seems to love interaction and play with other babies and also because I sense I am going to need other mommies as friends when the light and warmth of summer are behind us.
Our little girl appears to be an adrenaline junkie (like her mother and father) as there is nothing she likes better than being startled (she laughs and laughs), being hoisted into the air and dropped quickly or swinging about wildly. Yep, that's our kid. I should also mention that she loves every food we give her, including tastes of tabasco and buffalo hot sauce. One might ask what kind of parent gives their eigh-month-old tabasco. But let's face it, Tabasco is like salt to me. To get any real flavor, one has to get their hot sauce from the shelves of a hidden store in Guadalajara. So, she better like Tabasco. It is only going to get spicier from here.
This was a low photo month, but next month will feature such fun events as the countdown to Halloween and Samara takes Los Angeles. Stay tuned.