month seven

Dear Brooklynn, You are now officially seven months old. Yes, your parents, who have at times struggled to keep house plants alive, have managed to care for you for more than half of a year. Honestly, I'm kind of shocked as well.

Some months I outline what I want to write to you because everything just flowed together and I need to brainstorm what I want to remember. We talk to other parents of small babies a few months younger than you and a comment of theirs will jar our own memories. We think, "Oh, remember when Brooklynn did that? I must have completely blocked it out of my memory until just now."

Pants on Head

This is not one of those months. No, this past month will always be remembered as the one that you spent eight days in the hospital.

I'm sure by the time you read this and actually understand how long eight days is, it will be more of a "Oh, a little over a week, ok..." reaction. I want to give you some reference to what eight days means to you right now.

At the time you checked in to the hospital, you were 206 days old. When you left, you were 214 days old. Yep, do the math: 206 + 8 = 214.  When we left, that made up a little over 3.7% of your life.

ER

That sounds small, right?  3.7%.  Insignificant. Consider that when we left the hospital, I was 10,243 days old. that 3.7% of my life is about a year.  And as hard as you may find it to believe some day, there was a time in your life when your dad wasn't old and completely uncool. 3.7% of a life is no small amount.

You spent two days at the hospital when you were born. Brand spanking new and hot off the presses. I think 10 days in the hospital should be enough for anyone for at least a few years, so let's try to stay home as much as possible from now on, ok?

This was the worst year for RSV in several years.  The day we came home from the hospital, the local news was outside the doors we just left reporting on how serious the whole situation was.

I'm Hooked Up

We were never really worried about your long-term well being. Even as we sat for three hours in the emergency room, we were confident you were going to be ok. We just didn't know that it would take quite so long to leave again.

You came home with four more stuffed animals than you left with, and after figuring out what this will cost us in medical bills, I want you to know that those had better be the four best stuffed animals ever created.

Now, I've made it seem that 8 days is the equivalent of forever in your life. Actually, it still left 3 weeks of healthy time.  I'm sorry; I failed to mention the double ear infection you developed during the beginning of the month.

Well, I think you probably had about 4.5 hours of being completely healthy and awake somewhere in there. We just expect to you have one heck of an immune system when you get older, ok?

ET Toe

Believe it or not, there were actually events in your life that did not revolve around illness.

Around Christmas, you started to sit up on your own but still seemed prone to spontaneous toppling if you stopped actually thinking about sitting up.

Now, sitting up is what you do. You sit up on the floor, on the couch, on our laps, in your crib. Why lay down when you could sit up and reach for things with your hands.

Hoodie

The bath tub still has you a little stumped because objects just seem to float away as you try to grab them. Don't worry about it, thought; you've only gone face first into the water one time trying to reach forward too far, and we got you out quick enough you almost didn't cry about it.

With all that sitting, it was only natural that you started to sit with us at the table while we eat our meals. Your mother and I finally got with it and ordered a high chair for you.

O2 Tank Big Girl

And if you have a high chair for a baby, that must mean it is time to eat some food. You've really taken to it, although the more excited you get about eating, the worse you are. We mostly just worry about you lunging forward and impaling yourself on the spoon while trying to get to the FOOD! Give me FOOD! You will tolerate plain rice cereal and veggies, but fruit is your favorite.  The first time we gave you peaches, you took a bite, stopped to taste, smiled, and did your best to stick your hand into the bowl because, hey, hurry up already, that stuff is good.

With all the sitting and hospital staying, you seem to have forgotten how to roll over (not that you have ever rolled from your back to your front anyway). According to the milestone charts you might be passing things back and forth between your hands (um, you did this over a month ago) and rolling all over (nope, not yet). I guess you are just bound and determined to do everything at your own pace, which is fine by us.

Caged

Let's just try to stay out of intensive care if at all possible. Your mom and I would really appreciate the normalcy of a month at home.

Love, Dad