Sunday, May 22, 2011

Dear Moe (15 Months)

What a lovely and busy month we’ve had, my darling! The weather hasn’t been fantastic, which means that there have been more than a few days that you didn’t get outside, but you’ve been kept busy with visits to playgroup and different museums.

We really hope that you’ll become a museum lover. Mainly because we think museums are a fantastic way to combine fun and learning, but also because it’s the field in which Mommy and Aunt Natalie work. We have a membership for the Science and Technology Museum, the Agriculture Museum and the Aviation and Space Museum. You hit Science and Tech on a regular basis - the five and under play area is perfect for you, and you love touring the exhibits and pressing buttons. We’ve also taken you to the Agriculture Museum more than a few times - you love seeing the animals, but the tractor exhibit is what has really captured your heart. Granny took you there and she said that when you saw the size of the tractor wheel, your eyes nearly popped out of your head. We’ve also done a lovely family outing to the Canadian Children’s Museum, but I think it will be another six months to a year before you can really enjoy that one.

We spent Mother’s Day at the Agriculture Museum, actually. Aunt Natalie has been visiting for a few weeks, so it was lovely to include her in our family outing. Both Granny and Grandma came with us, too. You enjoyed seeing the cows and got to pet a baby chicken!

"Seriously? You're going to let me touch it?"

One of the greatest things about taking you to the Science and Tech Museum is that now you’re walking up a storm and it’s a great place to just let you roam. You walk with great confidence, you’re getting much steadier, and you have even tried running a few times. We got you some lovely shoes for the summer from Kiddie Kobbler, thanks in part to a gift certificate from Aunt Janine and Uncle Mark. Having those light but well-fitting shoes has helped you quite a bit. You’re still not terribly sure of yourself on grass, but that will come.

You love to throw and chase your ball, you build wonderful towers with your Mega Blocks, you love playing with your cars and driving them over any surface you can find, and you LOVE playing with water. The weather has been poor this month, but we did have a couple of gorgeous hot afternoons where you were able to play on the deck. We’ve got it all set up for you with a play table for your cars, a gate, a chair for Mommy, and your water table. You loved playing in the water! I brought you to Uncle Ted’s for the afternoon yesterday and we filled the beer bucket up with water and gave you some toys and you kept yourself occupied for two hours. You were especially interested in the hose.

Water Table

We all got sick this month. Daddy got it, then you got it, then I got it. Granny even got it. Grandma seemed to emerge unscathed, somehow. But it was a terrible cold, and you weathered it as best as you could. It’s very hard to see you sick, little Moe. Eating and drinking were very difficult because you couldn’t breathe through your nose, you weren’t sleeping well, and you generally felt miserable. But we’re all back to 100% now, thankfully.

You’re a big flirt. You flirt with people at the park, with people you see in stores, with guests who come to our home. It’s adorable. You smile and giggle and generally melt hearts. You also started giving me and Daddy kisses, which was awesome. You did it for a few days but haven’t done it since. I hope you pick up the habit again. You still give excellent hugs.

You love it when we sit on the floor and you can stand behind us and hide behind our backs. You love it when Daddy carries you up the stairs super fast, chasing me. You love (thanks to Jeannie) to point at us with both your arms outstretched and your head cocked to the side. You love making the pinching motion with your fingers in the car. You love music, you love dancing, you love it when we sing.

We had a long discussion about whether or not we’d get you a toddler harness. We had decided against it for now, but when I brought you to Walmart to get a new baby gate, you suddenly pointed at something on the shelf and squealed. It was a monkey that you could wear on your back! As soon as I took it down from the shelf, you freaked out and wanted to see it so badly. I gave it to you and you hugged it. So I bought it. And you love to wear it. And although we don’t use this feature, there is a “tail” we can use as a leash should the need arise. It’s a nice compromise. Right now though, you just love wearing your monkey.

Now that the weather is nicer and you can play outside on the deck or in the yard, you’ve been seeing a lot more of your neighbours. A (who is about 4) lives next door, and her mom runs a day care, so there’s always two or three other kids there, too. There’s a little boy and girl who visit their aunt down the street, so they like to play with us, too. And there’s T a few doors down - he’s 3 or 4 and is tons of fun. His little brother E is only 7 months old, so right now you’re the youngest who isn’t a babe-in-arms. The other kids love your play table, and for the most part, are very nice to you. You see them playing outside and ask to go join them. It’s a nice part of the afternoon. Usually, I get home from work, get changed, and we go outside to play until dinner.

I think we’ve found you a day care provider, sweetie. Starting in September, you’ll be going to play at R's house for 3 days a week. After a month or so, we’ll make it 4 days a week. We really like R, but we especially like that she’s warm and affectionate (because you are too) and that she incorporates music into her day, because you love music. You’ll be going with her to a school playgroup in the mornings, too, which I think is a great place for you to spend time.

Your eating skills are improving all the time. We can put the plate on your tray and you’ll eat your finger food without dumping it. We can fill a spoon with food (if it’s relatively thick and sticky, like stew) and you will take the spoon from us and put it in your mouth. You like to drink from a regular cup now, too. We only put a small amount in the cup at any time, and we find that you’re more careful with milk than water. Water is often a free for all - you’ll load it into your mouth and then spit it out because it’s fun. You still take a bottle before bed or nap, and you also drink from a sippy cup when we’re on the go. We’ll eventually get away from the bottle and replace it with a sippy, and we’d also like to get you to brush your teeth somewhere between the milk and bed. We’ll get there. Right now you brush your teeth after each meal (while sitting in your high chair, chewing on the toothbrush) when we remember. You have so many teeth now that it’s getting more important for us to remember to give you the toothbrush! And we sing the Toothbrush Family song, which you love.

You have the best smile, the most awesome laugh, and the sweetest face. You are kind, gentle, determined, are great at problem solving, and are generally a ton of fun. We love you so much. Keep being amazing - you’re so good at it.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Some Advice

I have several friends struggling with infertility right now, and today one of them told me that their boss called a bunch of people into his office and announced his wife's pregnancy. 

"I wasn't expecting that," this person said. "How do you deal with something like that?" 

My reply to this question: 

OMG, you try not to throw up.

I had a mantra. I would tell myself, "I'm happy for this person. I'm just really sad for me." And that feeling this way is OK. And I would put on a brave face for 2 minutes, walk up to them and congratulate them heartily, and then back off and say, "I'm sorry, I must run. Congratulations again!" and get the hell out of dodge. Or if it's a big group, just discretely melt out of the room.

And then go find some ice cream. 

And then you take your ice cream and go for a walk and cry. Because someone has just emotionally kicked you in the stomach and that's what we as humans do when that happens. You cry at the injustice and the unfairness and the why-the-hell-is-life-like-this.

And later, when it comes time to celebrate this man's good fortune, you send me $20 and I go and find some children's books, and I wrap them for you and buy a card, and you sign the card and give it to someone who will be attending the shower and you SEND YOUR REGRETS. Because torture is against the Geneva convention and attending a baby shower is torture for people coping with infertility.