we've made it to six months.  ian and i have kept a child alive and happy for half a dang year.

well, mostly ian.  i have been spending most of these six months complaining endlessly about pumping and pretending not to hear the baby monitor at 5 am.

things that my dude can now do:

  • eat solids voraciously.  i give him small pieces of whatever we're eating for dinner when it's not taco bell, and he handles this with astonishingly bad dexterity.  he also achieves a poor ratio of ingestion vs mess, but seems satisfied with the journey.  the dogs have never been happier, but i am not thrilled that i have completed yet another annoying evolution.  shamefully, i am now the type of person that delights in seeing my kid with peanut butter smeared all over his dumb face.  what is this genetic sorcery?  why have i become a monster?
  • bully his classmates.  james has been officially deemed worthy of moving on to the second infant room.  he is the oldest, the biggest, and probably the worst.  he roll around, keep stealing socks off the other babies.  then he try to chew their feet, one teacher tells me.  we have to grab him, tell him he can't eat other people.  i secretly hope this is just a precious anecdote and not a dropped pin in his life story of becoming a murderpedia.com article.  but the teachers all praise him for being consistently happy and easygoing, fond of smiling and quick to put himself to sleep.  still, it is time for him to move on.  his attempts at socializing with the little potatoes in his class go unnoticed and rebuffed.  starting next week, he'll begin transitioning to the adjacent classroom, where there are bigger feet to snack on.
  • begin babbling.  technically, very technically, his first words were mama because he makes those sounds repeatedly while trying to scoot.  it's a trip listening to him really trying it, figuring out how to make sounds with his lips and tongue.  but we won't be calling first words until he actually knows what he's attempting to communicate.  and i'm still hoping it'll be jet fuel can't melt steel beams.
  • show signs of starting to crawl.  little man already scoots backward with astonishing ease, but recently he has learned to assume the position- raising himself up to a quadruped pose.  this is a big one, because the idea that my helpless little 7 lb meatloaf can now become a real mobile person is hard to wrap my mind around.  like yes, cognitively i know that babies grow and explore and do things and become toddlers that become children that become taxpayers.  i understand this on an objective level, but i am also acutely aware that these months of development are far too fleeting.  he is becoming impossibly heavier, squirmier, and one day ian will no longer be able to cradle him to sleep for hours in his arms.  one day he will want to move from one place to another and he won't need to look up at me pleadingly for help.  the pains and drudgery of the newborn stage that made me long desperately for development feel like a very distant nightmare, and now i am left with a constant bittersweet taste.  every sign of growth feels like a reminder of loss.  parenting is just one long letting go, my friend from the august 2016 birth month group tells me.  i think about the truth of this daily.  we are only six months in and i am already wistful.  i will be unbearably maudlin by the time james is school-aged.

things that i can now do:

  • be an annoying sadboy all the time.