Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Feat of Sitting Up

Newborn babies are boring. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. They don't see well, they're fairly quiet, and their daily accomplishment are few and far between. The mother of a 3-month old baby excites over her baby's newfound ability to focus on objects several feet away from their face. It's cause for celebration.

A six-month old - on the other hand - a six-month old can do some pretty cool shit. A six-month old, for example, can sit up and play with blocks. Now we're cooking with gas.

I can hardly explain the novelty of Atticus being able to sit up. It is nothing short of a magic trick in my book. How DOES he do it after months of floppiness that necessitated constant carrying around? One second, he's a spineless fish nearly slipping out of my arms. The next, he's a strong little man sitting up, reaching for toys just out of his reach.

Not only does he sit up on his very own, he is also engaged with toys and very, very interested in this whole crawling business. If only he could figure out how to move forward. Backwards? Sure, we have that down. Forward is another thing altogether.

But the sitting up - this, according to Dr. Sears, is the master skill of the six-month old. And Atticus, well obviously he is a master at it even if he occasionally (read: always) falls over at some point during the sitting up. Still, the kid is good. I mean, he's, like, really, really good at it.

I cannot get over it. I sit and watch him do it and cannot go over the feeling that this is all very wrong somehow. He should not be sitting up, or rocking back and forth on all fours in an attempt at locomotion. I thought it would be more of a struggle, but he's no more than thought of it and the feat is done. And it is in those moments that I am utterly aware that Atticus is not an extension of me. While surely I encouraged his ability to sit up, I didn't teach him how to do it. That was all him. He is a complete and whole person whose instincts, both physical and emotional, will dominate his life in a way that even a mother cannot compete with. Not that I want to. I don't.

I'm the transition team. Me and Michael are. We're just here to get him through to adulthood, and with any luck, we'll be there then as well to continue to serve as buffer and pillow when he inevitably falls over again. Even the most mastered of skills fail us at times. But oh how it is fun to watch the skills be acquired. And oh how remarkable it is to be human. To grow, to learn, to get smart, to be interested, to lunge for toys, to sit up on ones very own. Motherhood is nothing if not a reminder of how miraculous we all are.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Goodbye to All That

I haven't written my Best of 2009 post yet and it's already halfway through January. No matter, the best of 2009 is Atticus. He's the best of everything. Right now he's chewing on a plastic star. You go get that star, little man. And all the other ones, too.

But I owe Atticus an apology. I've spent the majority of 2009 complaining to women about how difficult a baby is. And really, Atticus is probably the most magical baby in the universe, especially now that he's six months old and chewing on plastic stars in his magical exersaucer. I couldn't love him more than I do right now. Except tomorrow, I'll probably love him even more. That's how magical he is.

So goodbye to all that complaining. Of course, I'll still have things to say and there will still be challenging mama days, but I'm not going to let that run the show. Goodbye to all that ingratitude and hello to thanks.

Thanks for the best year, Atticus. I'm looking forward to a hundred more with you, magical little man. Love, love, and exponentially-growing love.

Saturday, January 9, 2010



I promise to post a real blog soon, but I just wanted to say I had to change my comment posting settings to get rid of all the stupid spammers who have been littering my account with their sales detritus. You can no longer post comments anonymously but can do so with an OpenID.