I looked at the calendar today and saw the 16th of September. To most, it just marks the slow demise of September and the impending start of fall. To me, the 16th marks a different day. Georgia came home on June 16th. It's amazing that she's been home for 3 months. She's officially spent more months at home than in the NICU (where she spent close to 2 months).
|Sitting up like a big girl|
Unfortunately, the 16th also marks another day in my calendar... I go back to work on November 16th. I know we've been luckier than most that I was able to take off so much time, but the thought that I only have two months left at home with Georgia makes my entire body ache. I've spent just about every hour of every day with her since she was born minus the nights in the NICU and a random few hours on the weekends. If she wasn't with me, then she was with Nick. If she wasn't with Nick, she was with my mom or highly qualified NICU nurses. The thought that I'll be handing her off to strangers... well, let's not go there yet. We've still got two more months to just enjoy being with each other.
I have to say that I just LOVE the age that Georgia is at right now. She just seems to be making developmental leaps and bounds on a daily basis. Again, people tell me to just enjoy this time when she doesn't mind being carried around or cuddling on my chest. Apparently, this too shall pass. Other people tell me that it only gets better - when she starts talking and walking and showing more and more personality. I'm sure all of this will be a blur one day. Before we know it, we'll be having fights over what she can wear and Nick is already contemplating how to remove her bedroom door from the hinges so the first time it gets slammed in our faces, it's coming off! I'm sure at some point we'll hear the timeless, "You don't love me!" Oh really, princess?!? I've already declared that her punishment will be to sit and read this blog from start to finish. It's great motivation to keep writing weekly. I'll even make up quizzes to ensure she's reading it! You know you're in trouble when the NICU nurses were taking bets that the kid's first word was going to be "NO!"
|Playing with Daddy|
So before she becomes that stereotypical teenager, I thought I would take a minute to document the top ten things that I love about Georgia at this very moment...
|Belly time on the boppy|
1 - I love her smile. Nick just lights up when he walks in at the end of a long day and Georgia instantly grants him one of her killer open mouth/one eye closed smiles. Those smiles also make 4am and 6am wake-ups well worth it when she gets her first glimpse at one of us and just breaks out in a huge gummy grin. Most of the time her laughs are silent, but the giggles are slowly starting to accompany her smiles. I love that her smile lights up her entire face. Her eyes twinkle. Her mouth opens wide. She smiles with her entire face.
2 - I love the noises she makes when she drinks her milk. It's like she is sighing in relief with every sip. "Ahhhhhh," usually accompanies every sip. She's made the same noise since she got her first sip of milk way back in the NICU. It's like she is purring with happiness when she is drinking her beloved milk.
|The official, "I'm bored!" face|
3 - I love her fat little sausage fingers. I love that they grab and pull (not so much when they grab and pull on my hair!). She desperately wants to hold her bottle, but most of the time she just interferes and grabs the bottle out of her mouth! She's learning how to grab her toys and pull them to her mouth to suck on them.
|I love to eat my hands!|
4 - I love that she enjoys kicking the day away on her play mat. She's at the age where she is just discovering her play mat, the saucer, the bumbo chair, etc. She seems to enjoy exploring and looking at all the bright colors and lights that go along with all the toys. She already knows when the music is not turned on with her play mat and will "complain" until it is turned on. She loves watching herself in the mirror and makes all sorts of funny faces at herself.
|Entertaining herself while I pump away!|
5 - I love that she enjoys her bath now. What a change that has been! I love that it is her and Nick's bonding time. I hear them talking back-and-forth in the bathroom as Georgia happily kicks away and Nick scrubs her down.
6 - I love all her new coos and noises. As a Speech Pathologist, I love that she's playing with her vocal tract and imitating all the vocalizations that she hears. As her Mom, I love thinking that she's learning and preparing to say her first words to us (Go Team "Mama!"). I just don't really appreciate all the noises and talking at 3am!
7 - I love that she's a happy baby. Her cries are rare and they are usually indicative of some problem. I'm hungry. I need a new diaper. I'm bored. I'm frustrated. I'm angry. I'm tired. At this point, we've got most of them figured out. It's not like her to cry for no reason.
8 - I love that she loves being in the car, the car seat, and the stroller. She typically falls right asleep whenever we get into the car to go somewhere. It makes taking little trips, like last weekend's ride to Annapolis, so easy. If I need to run an errand during the week, I usually load her up with milk and strap her into the car seat. I know that I get can out of the house for a few hours before she starts letting me now that she's going to want more milk soon.
9 - I love that she appears to have inherited Nick and I's love for sleeping. I'm hoping it lasts for a very long time. She's been fairly consistent with an intial 7-8 hour stretch followed by another 3 hour stretch for several weeks now. She has an off night here and there, but we usually can trace back its cause and it's usually our fault for not sticking to the plan or not cluster feeding her before bed. She's a fairly good napper right now and takes a late morning, late afternoon, and early evening snooze.
10 - I love that she's a fighter. She's strong as hell (both literally and figuratively). She keeps proving people wrong time and time again. She got released from the hospital early. She didn't need a stinkin' monitor to remind her to breathe. Who needed only 2 oz of milk in a bottle!?! She wanted 3.5 oz! We were told she'd need to be on the fortifier for months. She was off in one month. She definitely doesn't fit the typical preemie profile.
On a side note... if anyone is not watching "Up All Night" on NBC, you are missing out. I feel like Nick and I are writing the show. Our favorite parts from the pilot episode... the wipes (why can't you ever just pull one out?!?!) and the old ladies stalking the husband/baby in the store. I feel like I am constantly followed by old ladies whenever I'm out shopping. In fact, I was in Target today for less than two minutes before I had two different ladies following me asking questions about Georgia and commenting on those chubby cheeks! Nick had to practically run away from a lady in the elevator during our first pediatrician visit. If you haven't had a chance to check out the show, give it a try - Wednesdays @ 8pm.