20 Weeks Old / by Christina Rosalie

Dear Bean,You are a 20 week old bean today. That means you're five months old. Where did the time go? Holding you tonight, in the big white armchair in the livingroom, with your face against mine, I could hardly imagine you as the little grunty thing you were, newborn.

Today you went for your first nap in the running stroller. I ran all the way to the park by the water, three miles from home--and back. You slept the whole time, and then woke up when we were in our driveway, and gave me this sweet, sweaty grin.

You know how to do so many things now--like roll over from your tummy to your back. You look funny when you do this--you crane your head high and sort of rock back and forth like a drunk before flopping over. I imagine you must feel triumphant when you find yourself on your back all of your own volition. A little like a sea lion must feel upon galumphing his way back into the surf. Rolling over from your back to your tummy proves to be a bit trickier--though you're working on it. You can roll side to side, but it's still hard for you to get up enough momentum to roll ALL THE WAY OVER. But when you do, you grin and grin, even when your arms are stuck under your belly and you're doing face plants into the carpet.

You also know how to grab ahold of your feet now--and put them in your mouth. This has become an obsessive pastime of yours. You LOVE your toes.

And you've discovered how to WHIMPER. I'm not sure if I'm a fan of this discovery--but you certainly are. You love the feeling of power you get when I put you down and you make these little huffy fussy noises and I COME BACK AND SMILE DOWN AT YOU and put your pacifier in your mouth...or...pick you up! I am sure there are millions of people out there who will say I am spoiling you, but I don't believe it. I think our way of being together feels right and intuitive. And I think spoiling a baby is a bunch of crock. You are begining to communicate with your world, and I think that is exciting. Even when, like today at nap time, you just wanted to be with us so much that every time I put you down you'd fuss and look around frantically until I came and held you. But once I finally sat down with you and we rocked together in the quiet, cool bedroom, you fell asleep. And you took a lovely two hour nap and woke up smiling.

You can reach out with both hands and grab anything and everything that's in front of you--and put it in your mouth. You've tried watermelon (you LOOOVE IT) and banana and plums. Your eye's get huge when you taste something new, just like they get when you experience anything else for the first time. Like taking a shower with Daddy today, or seeing the grunting pigs at the farm last weekend.

You have also started to giggle, especially when I kiss your tummy or when Daddy puts you up his head and calls you "super bean." You're such a goof ball, such a ham--with your big, wet, gummy grin. It's amazing to watch you grow, despite the moments where I feel worn out and totally sick of lugging your little hair-pulling self around.

Love, Mommy