He may push me on the brink of insanity at times, he may make me cry in utter exhaustion, he may also bring me the most overwhelming sense of comfort, love and purpose.
His name is Bennett, and he is nine months old.
He has now wiggled, giggled, crawled and rolled his way around this world as long as he kicked and shoved his way around my womb.
Those nine months were intense, they were scary, they were beautiful.
And just as he kept us on the edge of our seats while I held him in my tummy, so does he while he explores this big world around him.
No fear should be his middle name. While Cole always balanced on the brink of caution, Bennett throws it all to the wind, and dives in head first---literally. He had a nice fresh goose egg as I took him in for his well-baby check yesterday, impeccable timing as usual.
Earlier this morning I turned around to scuffling and found that Bennett had dog-piled Cole and had him pinned to the ground with one hand on Cole's chest and the other with a fistful of his hair. Cole looked at me with a half smile...kind of like, 'Mom, this is sort of fun, but sort of overwhelming all at the same time.' I had to pry those fists off of his big brother. Bennett, you proved your point, as usual. Big brother may think twice next time dog pile crosses his mind.
He may be little, but he is wirey, as my mom says. He is in the 4th percentile for weight (17 lbs) and 5th for height (26 inches). He actually lost a 1/2 lb in a month, so we are supposed to try and chub him up with some high calorie foods. He is in a size 3 diaper, wearing some 3-6 mo clothing, but mostly in 6-9 mo. Overall he is developing and hitting all of his milestones with flying colors!
He finally started doing the real crawl about a week before he turned 9 months. He had been moving along just fine doing a kind of army crawl combined with a froggy style leg action. I almost thought that he would skip actual crawling just because he was so successful getting around that way. But just as with everything else he had to prove me wrong. I had to admit, I really love it when they start to crawl....it is just the cutest thing ever!
He is definitely using crawling to his advantage to digging and rummaging. He loves to open and close any type of door. The other day he kept himself occupied by opening a cabinet door and pulling out muffin tins, colanders, cutting boards, and whatever he could get his sticky little fingers on. Sometimes you just got to let them make a mess.
He has decided that he no longer likes taking baths. Pair that with still not liking getting lotioned up, or getting dress, or going down to sleep for that matter..... and you pretty much get how his bed time goes.
We finally decided to bite the bullet and do some sleep training. You can only go with no sleep for so long before you start to feel like you're living an out of body experience. We had reached that point. It was no fun. For anyone.
We finally decided we weren't sleeping anyways, so might as well teach one of us how to fall asleep on their own. The one of us being, the smallest, yet mightiest in this department. It took a lot of crying, a lot of soothing, a lot of back patting, and tear wiping. But eventually he caved. And he started giving us some longer stretches. I felt like a new woman!
He has had nights of regression, and night's where we aren't as consistent as we should be. But overall, he is sleeping better. But now he likes to rise with the sun.
Such a stinker.
He is working on waving, and will usually start flapping one arm excitedly when I, or someone walks in the room.
He loves to be silly. Usually this silliness comes out when he is dodging whatever it is that I want him to be doing...usually sleeping. While walking around with him trying to get him to go to sleep, I noticed that anytime I looked away from him he would start to giggle....then when I turned my head to look at him he would erupt in straight-from-the-belly-laughter. We were both laughing so hard, he postponed his nap, and I had tears streaming down my face.
He enjoys having dinner with us. I have been giving him cheerios and puffs, both of which he loves. He is getting so good at his pincher grasp, and is getting quicker and more efficient by the day.
He also enjoys eating whatever he can find on the floor--so gross, I know. He's my pocket vacuum. Thankfully most of the junk he finds are lost cheerios anyways, saves me from dragging out the real vacuum....I'm kidding, I'm kidding (well, kind of).
He still really loves being right up in big brothers grill.
You should see the way these two light up when they see each other in the morning! Today, as I was walking Bennett down the stairs, Cole kept yelling, "Bay-bay, Bay-bay, Bay-bay". He could have cared less about me, he wanted to give his little bro a big hug and kiss before anything else.
The other day, the two of them were playing outside, Cole shared his cars with him, and Bennett could not have been happier.
Cole insisted on wearing that hat.
Never in a million years did I think seeing a red car in little hands would bring me so much joy. And that is just one of the many, many, many reasons why I think God knew I needed little boys.
They just bring me joy.
I love watching them both grow and change and learn about the world around them. While I wish I could shield them from boo-boos, bonks, and scraped knees...I know that is all part of this process.
I am so thankful that I can at least be here, day in and day out to kiss those tears good-bye, to snuggle them when they need it, and to hug them when they let me.
And I get to watch those little chubby hands, playing with red cars, grow into bigger more perplex hands that can reach out to those who need help, to grasp those that need a little footing, to carry those who cannot walk themselves. May God grant my children the strength to use those hands for many good things, even when the good may be going against the grain.
How I love them. More than words.
And Bennett boy, I have no doubt you will channel all of that spunk for the good of the world.
The world needs a good dose of your spunk for sure. And the world will never be the same.
From 9 months to so much more!