And i have pictures to post--oh, do i have pictures to post! but they're not uploaded yet, and i have exactly 20 minutes right now while Abby and Eliza nap and Grace is over at the neighbor's house, so i'm writing.
Eliza is eight months old. I can remember the exact day that Grace, my oldest, turned 8 months old. It was the day she started crawling, it was her first Christmas, and it was the first time she'd been sick--influenza, to be exact :) For whatever reason, the 8 months it took Grace to reach that age felt exactly like 8 months. But the past 8 months with Eliza have felt like 2, maybe 3 (except the days/weeks where we were sick, those felt like years, but they're in the past, and don't count anymore!!). How can time pass so differently? Grace was such an easy baby, Eliza's been BY FAR my hardest baby--and yet time is disappearing with Eliza--that's literally how i feel!
Eliza is so fun, so much of the time. She laughs way more than my other two did. She plays games, she makes funny faces, she's insanely ticklish -- she's so much fun!! She also cries and screams and whines way more than my other two did. And the worst part--she does NONE of these things when other people are around. Nobody gets to see the cute giggly girl i have, and nobody gets to hear the crying that i get to all day long! As soon as we're around other people, i start hearing words like "mellow" and "chill" and "pleasant" to describe her. Oh, i never know quite what to say to those comments. People don't want to be told that they're dead wrong, but i don't like to agree when it just ain't true :) So, i usually smile and say, "believe it or not, she's the hardest of all my girls" and then they just tell me how easy i've had it and how lucky i am--both of which are true.
Eliza weighs today what Grace and Abby weighed at their 4 months appts-16lbs. It's one of the many things about Eliza that has taught me that the same two parents can make extremely different babies.
A couple posts ago i mentioned how Eliza had dodged the whole RSV thing, and how lucky i was because i was not in a place, mentally or emotionally, to handle a sick baby. Well, apparently 10 days later i was in that place. It was the Friday morning that Reid's brother was coming into town, with their BRAND NEW BABY and Eliza let out this little cough that just sent something through my whole gut, telling me that it was going to be RSV. I quickly went to the Dr., knowing full well that whatever she had was just a "cold" at this point, and that there would be no way of knowing this early on what course this cold would take in her body. I told Tom and Jana that I was nervous about them coming, and that Eliza's cough could be RSV, but they chose to come anyway. we were VERY careful about not letting the two babies near each other. And Eliza was mostly just a little coughy/sniffly while they were here.
The day after they left our house Eliza was in the emergency room. She got a treatment that cleared her up enough to the point where they felt comfortable letting her come home with me. The diagnosis was, as i knew it would be-- Bronchiolitis. Now, here's the bright side of this story. Although the next 6 days were absolutely awful with my sweet baby struggling with each breath, breathing 70 times a minute, and feeling overall lousy, I was soooooo worried about our little nephew getting it, that i didn't have enough energy to worry about my own child. I knew Eliza would be fine. I'd known that all along, i really did. (unlike when Abby had it and i didn't sleep a wink for 7 days straight for fear of losing her). And i just counted the days, as they'd pass, and i'd call Jana to see if Gabe was okay still. And by the time i figured he was in the clear, and was no longer in what i deemed the "danger zone" Eliza's lungs were clearing up! And that was that. it was over. and she is fine. and i am fine. And, of course, abby got it, and had a blazing fever of 103 for a couple days, but we are all just fine now. especially Gabe.
Enough of that. I could, and probably will, write a whole post about how often we get sick, and how unfair it is, and how everybody always comments about how they don't know anybody who eats as healthy as we do, and yet we're still always sick! but not right now. i'm so sick of talking and thinking about it, i'm moving right on :)
Eliza started playing this peek-a-boo game about 6 weeks ago. I wanted to get a video of it, but i really should have had just one more hand before attempting this. this video might or might not make you giggle uncontrollably, but it does me. i really laugh for about 3 minutes every time i watch this, but that's probably because i perfectly saw what the camera only barely captured--Eliza hitting the floor and just staring at me. At least you can kind of see her playing peek-a-boo as she buries her head and then brings it up again.
Eliza eats ALL the time and she eats SOOOO much! She eats, in one sitting, after being nursed, a half of an avocado, 6 ice cubes of carrots, and 1/4 cup of oatmeal cereal--and that's just breakfast!! And i really think that if i kept feeding her she'd keep eating. I know they say to just let your baby be the boss of when they're full, but at some point i've gotta stop, right? She also feeds herself cheerios, puffed rice, and chopped up cooked veggies. She LOVES to eat, she LOVES to nurse (still 6 times a day!!) and, as of about a month ago, she's got 4 teeth--all on the bottom! She's a great napper, and she used to be a great night-time sleeper, but the whole RSV thing kinda screwed that up, and we're still trying to get her back to sleeping through the night without a feeding (or two, last night!) I'm so much less strict with her than i was with Grace and Abby. I would NEVER have let them eat at 2am when they were 8 months old, but I guess it all comes back to the fact that i really don't feel like Eliza's been around for 8 months!!
About a week ago i said the words "eliza's showing no signs of being ready to crawl" and of course the next day she started getting up on her hands and knees, and rocking a little. She's still not crawling, but she's scooting around, mostly backwards, and still pretty slowly.
Eliza will forever be the baby that I will always wonder if she was really a needy baby, or if I just spoiled her. I know, from reading other mom's blogs, that many moms seem to think it's the baby. And now i know why--it's much, much, much easier to have a difficult child who "just came that way" then it is to think that it was your doing. Truthfully, i'm quite sure it's a combination of both. But some days i'd rather not think that :)
Two good friends of mine here had 8 month old babies when Eliza was born. They were both big boys, but they seemed like giants after Eliza was born (a phenomenon i'm sure many out there have experienced). But i remember looking at those two boys after Eliza was born, and thinking that there was no way that my baby would ever be 8 months old. Well, she is. And i absolutely love her. I love going to get her after a nap--she kicks and squeals and giggles and it makes me happier than almost anything else in the world. I love watching her fill her fists with food until there's no more room and she starts eating what's coming out of her knuckles. I love watching her sit on the floor, surrounded by loving sisters who get a little too loving at times--and she turns her head to find me, to make sure that I can see what's going on, and then she's fine. I love that i'm the person that she always wants. i sometimes don't love that, but right now i do. I love that she wakes up so happy and just talks in her crib for 20-30 minutes. I love that after a rough morning with her i want nothing more than for her to nap, but after a big ole nap, i look so forward to her waking up.
I am completely in love with our little surprise baby. Best surprise ever. period.