'A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2016.'
This week you have scooted all the way to the Post Office dressed in your sandals, mermaid dress (made by Granny), and pyjamas, practiced diving at swimming, told stories about Cinderella and learned that your birthday is in November. Here's how your storytelling went: (You were looking at a book about a poor girl called Hannah who was hungry and saw some bees with honey, just to add some context.)
'Once upon a time there was a girl called Cinderella....Once upon a time there was a girl called...that girl. Today there was a girl called Cinderella. She went on the garden with him. Once upon a time, there was a girl called Cinderella. She looked very sad. She wanted some bees.'
Talking about your birthday with great excitement:
'I remember I went to her birthday....it's my birthday in No...No-member! Daddy! It's my birthday in So-member!'
I have a feeling your third birthday party is going to be a lot of fun.
On Saturday night, you woke up at 1.30am, and came running to my room in floods of tears, saying, 'I want Giraffe's Can't Dance' over and over again. I had no idea why you were so upset about this and figured you must have had a dream about this book. I suggested you go and find Daddy in the spare room, as I was worried that your loud crying would wake Jude, and once you had found Daddy, you just got more and more upset, saying, 'I want these books! I want my books!' In the end, the solution was for Daddy to get your book basket, bring it into the spare room, then you were content to fall asleep.
All my love,
Last week was a tough old week. You just cried so much and we struggled to help calm you down. As a parent of a new baby, it can feel a bit like you're failing if you can't soothe your baby. We are the ones who know you the best, and yet we just couldn't work out what you needed. On Tuesday this week, I was chatting with a good friend (we met three years ago when I was pregnant with Ruby and she was pregnant with her first daughter), and she very helpfully reminded me about the Wonder Weeks. This is a term that has been coined as a way of describing the significant developmental milestones that every baby experiences and reaches in the first seventy five weeks of life. The first of these milestones, or 'wonder weeks' is week five. That afternoon, I re-read the first section of my Wonder Weeks book, having not read it since Ruby was a baby, and had one of those 'Aha' moments. Everything they described that happens during the fifth week of life was so characteristic of how you had been. I was so thankful to that friend for giving me just the little bit of perspective I needed in that moment. To be reminded that perhaps you were going through significant developmental changes, rather than us being awful parents, was very helpful. I cannot tell you how grateful I am for the friends I have to journey through life with, and one of my prayers for you is that you would find the kind of friends that Daddy and I have been blessed with. You do not need lots of friends, but those you do have should be people that you know love you regardless, who can see you at your worst and walk with you through those times, and celebrate with you when you are at your best.
This week has been quite different. You have been calmer, less uncomfortable after feeds and you are just a little bit more interested in the world around you when you are awake. On Thursday we spent the entire day going back and forth between appointments for you. You had your hips scanned at the hospital, just to check that everything is ok with them - you were breech until 37 weeks of pregnancy, when an obstetrican managed to turn you around - but they like to scan all babies that have been breech in the last weeks of pregnancy. The Doctor checked you over for your six week check and deemed you 'perfect'. We love you, Jude.
All my love,
P.S Your new favourite way of falling asleep is in the sling with me walking up and down the stairs over and over again. I don't know why but this works, almost without fail at calming you and lulling you to sleep.