31 March 2009

Still believing...

A year ago today I started this blog and wrote about how I was believing in miracles.  Our little one has come a long way...and her mommy has too!  Zoë came to us in God's perfect time.  She has restored my hope, changed my profession and caused my heart to grow to the point of bursting.  And it all started with this first glimpse... 

Zoë as a little 8 week bean 

Zoë as a happy, healthy, thriving 4 1/2 month old

19 March 2009


Hello little baby...

Mmmmm...let's start with that arm

I always love me some baby toes

Now come on...how about some Penny lovin'

Oh yeah...that's the way I like it!

11 March 2009

4 Months

Dear Zoë,
Today you are 4 months old!  We had another pediatrician appointment today and unfortunately you had to get another shot.  Oh how mommy hates that cry of pain!  Other than the shot the appointment went very well.  You are measuring 14lbs 3oz and 25in long.  Such a big and healthy girl!  The Dr. also said we can start feeding you cereal in the next few months.  She said to look for signs that you are ready and I think you are!  Just in the past few days you've started this chewing thing with your mouth.  You look kind of like a cow chewing cud.  It's so cute!  You are also sitting up very well in your Bumbo seat (which you love!).  But, I think I'm still going to wait another few weeks...because once we start feeding you solids there's no going back.

Now let's see, what have you been up to this month?  You've finally started to laugh...although you do not pass them out generously.  Oh no, you make us work hard for those sweet little giggles.  But don't get us wrong, we're willing to work!  You have also really found your hands and you love to hold on to them as well as shove them in your mouth.  I had to get a picture of you doing this because you look kind of like a worried little lady rubbing your hands together.  So cute!  You're also still drooling like a leaky faucet.  You rolled from your tummy to your back twice this month.  But I don't think you really knew what you were doing.  Both times you were screaming & crying and the rolls were more in a fit of rage than anything.  Your favorite form of talking these days is saying "hey".  Sometimes it's just a short little "Hey!" and sometimes it's a long drawn out "Heeeeeeeeeeeeyyyyy!"  that sounds something like a musical sigh.  And Zoë, you really are such a happy baby.  So content and smiley.

Well dear, your hair is falling out at an appalling rate these days.  Your Aunt Sonya calls it "baby-pattern baldness".  And what little you have remaining tends to lay flat on your head.  Gone are the days of my precious little spiky haired thing.  The picture below is right after your bath.  If I comb it all up it does this curly thing that looks just like your daddy's hair.  Too bad the curls don't last...it all ends up standing straight as a board when it dries.  Nevertheless, your daddy is still proud when it looks crazy like his and he gets sad when I point out little strands left behind in your swing or carseat.  

You still love to suck on that fist.  We thought you would have settled on one of your fingers by now.  But, oh no, it's the whole fist or nothing!  You've started to sometimes take the paci.  But not very often and by no means all the time.  I can usually only get you to take it if you're really sleepy or fussy.  Otherwise you'll just gnaw on it for a minute then spit it out.

And of course we need to talk about your sleeping.  Ah sleep...you sure do love it.  In fact, if I let you I think you would sleep the entire day.  But, I do not let you.  Per the pediatrician's advice I wake you up from naps in order to keep you on a good feeding schedule.  Plus, she seemed to think that maybe you weren't getting enough to eat during the day and that is why you were still waking up at night (I actually called her when you were going through your eating every 2 hours during the night phase).  Oh, did I not mention you're still not sleeping through the night?  Not in any sense of the phrase.  You still wake up pretty much every 4 hours to eat.  Even despite our best efforts to the contrary.  Another piece of advice the pediatrician gave us was to keep you awake during the late afternoon/early evening so that you would sleep longer at night.  And boy that has made for some fun times at our house...let me tell you.  Because did I mention how much you love to sleep (or should I say nap)?  So, during this time Daddy & I carry you around, bounce you, sing, give you a bath, and generally whatever we can think of to combat those falling eyelids of yours.  This tends to just make you fussy and look at us like, "Dude, just let me sleep already!"  And honestly it's not really working.  Like I said, despite all our efforts you still want to wake & eat about every 4 hours.

And speaking of our best efforts, we discovered Baby Einstein this month.  I had no idea how you would love it!  I found it on YouTube one night in a desperate attempt to keep you awake.  Being new to the world of Baby Einstein I did not realize how creepy it is.  But you were instantly mesmerized.  You went from fussy-whiny to zoned out as soon as the music started.  Whoever is making those videos totally knows what they're doing.  So we've added this to our repertoire of trying to keep you awake.

I've also decided that it's time to retire the swaddle.  I tried last month and it was not good.  You woke up so many times I decided it just wasn't worth it.  So we just keep you all wrapped up because it works.  People have told me that you would eventually bust out when you were done with it.  And it cracks me up that you don't.  You totally love your swaddle!  Even though your grandparents call it the "straight-jacket".  You actually get very grinny when I start wrapping you up in it.  But, I think it's time to start weaning you off of it.  Besides, you're about to outgrow all of the ones we have!

Watching you grow and change is at the same time amazing and heartbreaking.  I simultaneously love the baby you are now and miss the little thing you were a few months ago.  And I know this pattern will continue.  I so look forward to seeing who you are going to be when you start toddling and talking.  But, I can already feel the pangs of missing our lazy days with you content to cuddle in my lap or be snuggled close in your carrier.

But, sweet Zoë, this is exactly what we signed up for.  All of it.  The overwhelming moments of love, the mundane everyday tasks, the frustrating late night crying, and the ache of knowing you don't really belong to me and one day you will fly from my nest.  These are my spiritual lessons.  And God is continually using you to teach me.

Several of my friends who have also experienced the heartbreak of miscarriage had something they would tell me for comfort that I didn't fully get at the time.  They said that no matter how devastating losing their baby was...they couldn't imagine life without the child they were blessed with.  I now so fully understand what they meant.  You are such an angel to me.  I sometimes thank the little ones we had to lose for knowing you were exactly what we needed.