Today is Mary Ellen’s nine-month “birthday.” I can’t believe that she’s this old already! Where does the time go?
This means that she’s now spent just as much time outside my womb as she spent inside it. She’s already a very independent soul, and I know she’ll just get even more independent as time goes on. We usually try to barricade her into the living room with us so she stays within our sight and out of the kitchen and other dangerous areas. But even though we’re in the living room with her, usually she wants out. I don’t think it has anything to do with wanting in the rest of the house. I think she just hates being confined. Kurt will move some of our dining room chairs into the space between our couch and our loveseat, which are set up in an L-shape, to try to keep Mary Ellen confined. Somehow she’s figured out how to go under the chair and over the little support rods that cross between the legs of the chair, just so she can break free and roam at will.
If you tell her “NO!”, that’s enough to set her off into tears. She can’t believe we would tell her she can’t do something, and she lets us know of her annoyance through her crying. Sometimes I think the neighbors are going to think I’m beating my kid because she can really scream, especially when she’s really frustrated. Yet all I’m doing is telling her “NO!”
But Mary Ellen is a very happy baby. It doesn’t take much to make her giggle and grin. Just saying, “Hi, baby!” is usually enough to elicit one of her nearly-toothless grins. Brushing my hair across her face will cause her to bust out into adorable baby giggles. Bouncing her on my knee gets belly laughs. She’s never hard to calm either on the rare occasion that she’s fussy. Most of the time she just wants to be picked up and to have a little bit of a cuddle, and then everything is right as rain once more.
She is very, very mobile. She figured out how to crawl commando-style when she was just seven months old, but now she can crawl like a pro. When she breaks out of the living room, she’s down the hall to Grace’s bedroom before you realize she’s gone! She loves to stand on her own two feet while clutching onto the couch, and sometimes she’ll even let go and stand without support. She only maintains it for a few seconds before she plops back down on her bottom. But she always seems so proud of herself. She’ll be walking before I know it.
So where did my baby go?? She’s almost a toddler already, and each day brings her new developments and new milestones. Knowing that she’s most likely our last baby, it makes me rather wistful. I wish I could hold on to these moments just a little bit longer…