Saturday, November 14, 2009

Where Does the Time Go?

Today is Paloma's nine-month birthday. Nine months ago today I pushed Paloma out into the waiting arms of a midwife, the neo-natal intensive care unit pediatrician, the NICU nurses... and finally, our arms. Sure, I got to hold her for what seemed like a fleeting second (twice, actually) before she was whisked upstairs, but in my mind all those people still got a piece of her first. Ah, well, it's really not that big of an issue. Paloma was a tiny thing once, now she's enjoying finger foods and toast and pieces of the banana bread her daddy makes.

Finger foods amuse her

Nine months, my gosh. Nine months ago Paloma and I were both figuring out how to nurse and Paloma was still really sucky at it. Nine months ago, Paloma was on a schedule of eating and sleeping and doing not much of anything else. Nine months ago we had to wake her up to eat because her preemie brain wasn't going to wake her up just because her little tummy was empty. Nine months ago preemie diapers were HUGE on Paloma and she was 98% fat free with chicken legs and an old man butt.

Now she's big, and it's time to put away her bunny mobile. The mobile, interestingly enough, was only attached to her crib for a brief time, and during that time her crib lived in my home office and was filled with random stuff to keep the cats from sleeping in it. Back then, Paloma was still sleeping between us in bed (and going to sleep whenever we happened to). One day I had the bright idea to attach the mobile to our bed, which is where it has stayed until now. We'd set the mobile to spinning on lazy Sunday mornings so we could snooze a bit longer when Paloma was still young enough to be absolutely enthralled by it. It helped us dress her many, many times by distracting her so we could get her arms into t-shirts. At first, she'd stare up at it, too preemieish to follow the movement. Then she'd follow the bunnies around and around with her eyes. Nowadays, all she wants is to be helped into a stand so she can grab at them. What a big girl she's become!

Chilling in the big-girl stroller

See? Paloma is finally big enough to ride around in her forward-facing umbrella stroller without my fearing she'll slump forward or be scared because she can't see me. Mostly she is enthralled by the scenery, much in the same way she used to be enthralled by her bunnies. Someday she'll be enthralled by boys, but not quite yet.


For now, other people her size are still quite the novelty, but not at all attention grabbing the same way a new rattle or prunes might be. Nowadays, thanks to her momma's desire for dollars, Paloma sees her babyfriends at least once or twice a week, and after Thanksgiving she'll be seeing them even more.

I'm quite interested to see how Paloma feels about my taking care of another baby for extended periods of time since Tedd and I were discussing the possibility of my removing my IUD in, say, August or thereabouts. It took me long enough to get pregnant the first go around, so we figure we have a little leeway where a second baby is concerned. We'd both prefer to get the babymaking over with so we don't devote too much of our lives to the care and feeding of helpless infants. Doubling up on the work in the short term sounds a lot better than stretching it out over the long term.

(In other news, I'm getting the H1N1 vaccine and hope Paloma will eventually be able to get it, Paloma has her nine month pediatrician appointment on Wednesday, and we're starting to think about Paloma's first birthday party, which has been scheduled for Saturday, February 20th.)

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