Love, Joleen: 10 Months

Sunday, September 29, 2013

10 Months

Dear Benjamin,

Daddy and I always ask what new thing you're going to master on your monthly "birthday" because, more often than not, you choose that day do something new. You turned 10 months on Friday and the last three days have been very challenging for our little family. On the eve of your "birthday", you refused to nurse. I found it odd but didn't think too much of it. The next day we had a great day together! Your morning nap was short but you were really good at lunch with our friends Hanna and Abby. You ate a lot and were in good spirits. After your afternoon nap I took you to the park to enjoy some fresh air and swing for a while. I was starting to worry because in 24 hours you had only nursed twice on the left side only.

By that evening I was a bit of a wreck because you were refusing to nurse altogether. I instantly received encouragement and advice from friends and family. Some people suggested an ear infection and others suggested that it could be just a phase; to not be too discouraged and to keep trying. I initially attributed your new preference to an increase in bottles you've been receiving. Last week we spent the most time apart and you'd had several bottles of Alimentum [a formula for food sensitivities]. So, Friday night you went down as usual but with a bottle, after refusing to nurse. You woke up at midnight and from then until 6 am you cried and flailed your body all around. Daddy and I were at a complete loss. You refused to eat or drink anything. Tylenol didn't seem to help. You were fussy and just a little bit too warm. Daddy finally got you to sleep for two hours on his chest on the couch like you used to do in the early days. 

Saturday morning we took you, for the first time, to urgent care. We had a good experience and the staff were incredible. The doctor who saw you was able to set our minds at ease by telling us that you weren't sick and didn't have an ear infection but were at the cusp of getting your top incisors and molars. Poor babe! You're still not quite yourself. Ibuprofen and teething tablets help and you're back to wearing your Amber necklace. I've been trying and trying to nurse you but you want nothing to do with me. My mama heart hurts a little that you're doing this so much younger than I anticipated but everything you've done so far has been early so I shouldn't be too surprised. I've started pumping again, after I had stopped when you turned 6 months old. You still want the breastmilk and are now refusing the formula. You want the breastmilk in a bottle and that's that. Mr. Independent.
Which brings me to walking. I totally called it last month - you're officially a walker. [See video] I look at you and see a toddler now and you're seriously the cutest toddling being there ever was. On the 5th you took five steps in a row and you haven't stopped since. It took you about three weeks but now you're walking first and for as long as you can (you can clear a room, usually) before falling over. If you fall and don't have something to pull yourself up on then you'll crawl the rest of the way to your destination. You haven't really attempted standing from sitting yet. 

You are always on the move! It's a wonder you sat long enough to take these photos, actually. Need a diaper change? Forget about it! As soon as your diaper is off, so are you! And you think it's the most hilarious thing too, which, it honestly usually is.
This month you've also started a couple other fun games, my favorite of which is blowing kisses. Your kisses are more like a smack of the lips but it's the cutest thing and you do it all the time! If I scold you for something you look at me sweetly and blow a kiss. Sometimes you just sit there blowing kisses and other times you wave goodbye and then blow a kiss. It's really sweet. Sometimes when we're driving home and I don't want you to fall asleep I'll start blowing kisses so that you do too and stay awake. Ha! Or I at least have to get you "talking". Your actual words are mama, dada, hi, okay, and baba but you're talking your own gibberish constantly.

The other new game you play is "telephone". You aren't allowed to play with Mommy and Daddy's phones but I gave you my old cell phone to play with. It's not nearly as cool to you since it doesn't make any noise or light up but you're starting to understand the concept. The first time you held it up to your ear I got way too excited!
Your nurse appointment for vaccinations is later this week but clothed you weighed 23 lbs on Saturday [at urgent care]. You're still comfortably wearing size 12-18 months, size 4 diapers, and have moved into your size 5 shoes. 

The next two months before your birthday are going to be so busy but I couldn't be more excited to experience it with you. 
I love you so much, 

Edited to add (10/01): You weigh 22 lbs 11 oz and are 30 inches tall! 

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