Oh Grae Goldie locks…
Nine months is an age I look forward to EVERY TIME.
It is so much fun and it never fails to disappoint.
It’s where the personality far outgrows what can be contained in the small body.
Grae says: mama, dada, buh-bye, papa, MmmmMmmm, boo and a couple other wanna-be mimics if she’s in the right mood.
She waves, gives fives, plays peek-a-boo with her blanket.
At her 9 month check-up, she weighed 14 lbs 1 oz and is officially in the 0%.  When the doctor came in I said “I don’t know what you want me to do, because she doesn’t take a bottle, so I can’t supplement with anything and she will hardly tolerate solids, just barely.”  He laughed and said I’m doing all I can do.  She’s happy and healthy and that means it’s only calories she’s burning off faster than piling on.  She is just a petite little thing.  (She’s wearing a 1-2 month dress (as a shirt) in the pictures above.)
Her heart is also sounding the same.  We go back in the spring to the primary’s specialist to have a listen and see where to go from there.  Not a lot of news about that, but I’m still feeling okay about it.
The good news is that she finally eats solids on the reg.  Crackers, blueberries, bananas, avocado are the top of her list.
She’s had a major bout with constipation this month which means we’ve had to start giving her apple juice every few days.
I am a sugar-phobic when it comes to my babies, but apple juice does the trick to keep those bowls a-movin’, so I have to get over myself.
She also takes acidopholus like a champ!  Loves the plain flavor and always begs for more.
She had the flu over new years and it was awful! Brady, Grae and myself all had it, but poor Grae seemed to have it the longest.  Vomiting and water diarrhea for over a week.  She’d seem to get better one day, and then diarrhea would resume the next.  Luckily, she threw up only a day or two and then drank pedialite really well and never got dehydrated, which is what makes the flu so scary for babes.  It was a LOOOOONG two weeks with us being sick, but we’re alive and well to day and feel blessed that it skipped over the big girls.
She says “Mmmmm!” when she eats anything.
She’ll try to mimic me when I hum a little tune. (heart melter!)
She has 3 teeth on top, two teeth on bottom and basically feels like nursing a baby shark.
She doesn’t bite down in on big clamp.. she nibbles and chews as she eats and it’s soooo hard.  I’m not sure she even realizes what she’s doing, which makes it hard to stop.  If I gasps or yelp in pain, it hurts her feelings and she just melts right into a puddle.
Last week she broke the skin. (ooooowie!) Any any any tips on this would be great.
So far, I have been just ending the nursing session when she starts to nibble.  One week she’ll do great, the next week I’m being bit at every feeding. Oh mercy!
The big girls tote her around everywhere making other people nervous every minute, but I think it’s so dang cute seeing them do it and they have yet to drop her, so I’m chalking it up to sibling bonding.
The best thing is as the girls are awkwardly hanging on to her for dear life, she is content as can be.  Completely unphased that her life is being risked. ha!
She calls “mama!” out all day long.  “What?” I say, “mama!” she says, “what?” I say.. on and on all day.
When daddy gets home she always hears the door and says “Hi Dada!”.  It’s basically what dreams are made of, I tell you.
Every time she gets excited she starts bouncing wherever she is.
Throughout the day when I’m holding her she’ll put her mouth to my chest and bounce as she bonks her face on my skin saying “Mmm-Mmm-Mmm”.
When she gets tired she finds my skin on my chest and lays her head down on it.  If I’m not wearing a v-neck, she’ll pull my shirt down to allow enough skin for her to lay her head.
She is also finally napping on a schedule (of sorts).  She’s up at 7:30 everyday and 10:00 is the magical time where she is always ready for a nap.
I rock her and nurse her and before she’s out, I lay her in her crib and she rolls right onto her tummy and doesn’t make a peep.  She usually sleeps for 1 – 1.5 hours and then goes back down between 2 and 3 for another short little cat nap.  Then she’s ready for bed by 7.
A few weeks ago, after weeks on weeks on weeks of almost no sleep for the both of us, in a zombie-like phase I got desperate enough to lay her down in her crib and walk away.  I knew she was unbelievably tired but would not give in and would wake every time I put her down in her crib.  We were both at our wit’s end.  I left the room and let her cry for a couple minutes to regain my patience and start over again.  To my amazement, after a few minutes she just rolled over and went to sleep.  So the next day, I laid her down for her nap in her crib and walked out.  Fussed just as I left the room, then rolled over and went out.  That night, she didn’t even fuss, just rolled right over when I put her down and has been sleeping like a dream ever since.  No one is more shocked than me about this.
I had a horrible experience with “sleep training” my first baby, then refused to do it my second-round, but never needed to because Stella slept through the night at 2 months old and loved her bed.  Grae has been a completely different set of sleeping issues and it turns out, that letting her fuss that one single night has made all the difference in the world.
I love finding the thing that works, and for me, it’s been different every single baby.  Such a lesson in judging others for their choices.  I have been forced to make different decisions every time.
I will say that since Grae has been sleeping in her own bed 1/2 (or so) of the night and napping, I feel like a totally renewed woman.
I have had little bouts of depression sprinkled into this post partum time, so getting a decent amount of sleep/down time during the day has helped immensely.
Quick bit on nursing..
Now that Grae is eating more solids, I can feel my milk isn’t as full.  This happens to me each time the solids start and I’ve been lucky that Grae hasn’t wanted solids as much and to be able to have made it until now with little to no nursing issues.  I have been taking fenugreek and blessed thistle in this transitioning time, but have this week really focused on offering her milk before solids.  This rounding the corner from full-blown milk-a-thon all the time, to dwindling to naps and bedtime nursing is always hard on my mama heart.  I feel the end coming, but I have to allow this journey to turn however it may.  Grae has been nursing a lot this week and I feel like we’re not quite to the end yet and that has eased me.  I think It’s been more on my mind this time as well because we’re almost to the age Stella quit nursing so this will be my longest go with it.  I’m not sure I’ve been more grateful for anything as I have been for such a great nursing experience with Grae this time around.  We have had such a great attachment through nursing, I have had a wonderful supply – my best yet.  I haven’t had to supplement and have felt so good about exclusively nursing from the source (due to her refusal of bottles).  I haven’t had this experience before and it’s been a great one that I’ll hold close to my heart.  Nursing is far from easy, so making it through to this round feels like a great accomplishment.  More though, just something I’m grateful to have had with Grae.  It’s been what I needed this time.  I know that.
And speaking of big girl milestones, this lady is on the move! She has been army crawling for a bit, but just in this last week or two has really taken off where she can get to point A to point B with ease.  The last few days she has done a belly-off-the-ground crawl.
I think it’s safe to say, she’s mobile.
Of course, she only crawls in the 5 minutes or so a day she allows me to put her down.
She’s a mama’s girl, that’s for dang sure.  She’s definitely gotten friendlier with other people, but there’s still no other person in the world she’d rather be with than me.
And what a coincidence, because the feeling is mutual.
I love this baby madly.  With the very depth of my soul.
Life is good with our Grae Babe around.