To Samuel – Month 12

Sam, it is with excitement, pride, and a bit of sadness that Mommy comes to write this letter. You are 1 year old now! The last year has flown by so fast, Mommy and Daddy are having a bit of trouble coping with how big you have gotten. We still think of you as a baby, until we look at you and realize that you aren’t really a baby at all anymore – you’re a little man! (You’re still our baby, but that will never go away – you’ll be 21 and still our baby. That’s the way it is, sorry buddy.) Anyway, you really need to just put the growing on pause for just a little while. Even a couple weeks. You’re still in your infant carrier and we have ordered your new carseat, but it won’t be here till the end of April! And as an aside, Mommy was WRONG thinking an infant carrier going up to 35 pounds was a good idea. Carrying you around in that thing is a special sort of hell, because you are HEAVY! You are also healthy though, so Mommy can’t complain too much.

This month has been BUSY! Mostly, it’s been busy because of you. Right as you turned 11 months old, you learned to stand up on your own. Your first time standing was using the side of the bathtub, but you use everything – chairs, couches, the coffee table, a leg, Charlie, a drawer handle, and lately even a flat wall is enough to help you stand up! And within a few days of standing, you started walking around hanging onto furniture, so a lot more things are within your reach now. You love this! Mommy and Daddy… not so much.

You are into EVERYTHING! After raising your brother, who never got into anything besides his own toys, doesn’t like dirty hands, and won’t put anything in his mouth that’s not food, Mommy and Daddy were NOT PREPARED for you! You are into everything. I know I already said that, but it just seems like I can’t say it enough! If anything at all is within your reach, it’s going to end up in your hand. You will crumple or crush it if it’s noisy, and if it’s not noisy, it goes in your mouth. Noisy stuff eventually ends up in your mouth too, though. You don’t care what gets on your hands, and before Mommy can clean them you often wipe them all over your face and through your hair. I can’t count the number of times we’ve had to wipe oatmeal out of your hair!

Speaking of food, I wonder if you think that everything is food, or if you just really think the only way to discover something is to taste it. Mommy has pulled so many gross things out of your mouth – dirty socks, shoes, the broom and/or dustpan, paper, toiletpaper/Kleenex, a giant dust bunny, chunks of dried mud, grass and the classic every-baby-except-Zane-must-try, dog crumbles. You seem to like everything, no matter how bad it is. You can have the most disgusting thing in the world in your mouth, and you’ll be perfectly happy about it – and rage when I take it away. And your rage – that’s a topic we’ve covered before. Let’s just say that the festering ball of anger that lives inside you (for reasons we still haven’t discovered) is alive and well. We’ve joked that you’re bipolar because you can be SO HAPPY and then throw such a HUGE FIT all within a five minute span.

I think you’re going to be our clingy child. You always want attention, cuddles, and to be picked up and held. I’m OK with it, because sometimes Mommy feels pretty neglected with your big brother being SO independent. I can always get down in your face and have a little visit, and you’re always SUPER HAPPY and excited to see me. You can’t get enough of people, and as social as you are now I just can’t imagine you ever being shy. I’m sure it will happen but it’ll be hard to get used to! The clingy part can get a bit overwhelming though, like when you’re pulling my pantlegs when I’m trying to do dishes, or crying on the floor because I’m not looking at you every second, or freaking out because I have walked out of the room without picking you up and taking you along. Mommy needs to be patient with your neediness though, because it will be over all too soon!

You were extra needy for a bit this month, as you and your brother both had terrible ear infections. You even had an awful-sounding cough – Mommy took both of you to the hospital when we realized what was going on, but I felt so guilty because it had gotten so bad before we realized. We’re so used to being sent home with “it’s a virus, gotta wait it out”. Zane told us his ears hurt during the night, and the next morning Mommy noticed you slapping yourself in the head and pulling on your ears. You had a bad ear infection in both ears – your first real sickness, which is pretty good for almost 1 year old! The chiropractor was able to help you to stop hurting though, and the antibiotics had you all turned around and cleared up in a few days. Mommy HATES it when you’re sick, especially when I think that it was worse because I didn’t notice it in time. One plus side of you growing up is that you’ll be able to tell me what’s wrong!

The last and biggest event for you this month was your birthday party! We celebrated your birthday and Zane’s on the same day, the day before you turned one. You got to see all your grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins, and even some of your second cousins – what a houseful! You slept through the first hour or so, and when you got up you were the quietest we’ve probably ever seen you – what were all these people doing here? None of them were there when you went to sleep! You stuck your fingers in Zane’s cake, tried to grab the flame of your candle and then stuck your fingers in your cake, and ignored your presents while tearing up tissue paper and wrapping paper. All exactly as we expected. The highlights of your day were receiving Auntie Carolyn’s old cell phones (now that was a savvy gift!) and smearing cake and icing into your eyebrows, ears, hair, and up your nose.

You are your own person, Samuel. You are loud, sometimes even obnoxious. You scream. You freak out if you don’t have what you want, NOW. You never stop moving, even when you’re asleep. You get into everything, constantly try to touch things you’re not allowed to have, pinch and bite and pull hair, pester the dog, and make MESSES! And we wouldn’t change a thing about you. You are our happy, energetic, curious little ray of sunshine. We love you just the way you are, and hope nothing ever happens to hurt your happiness.

Your measurements at 1 year:

  • Weight: 23 lb 8 oz
  • Height: 31 inches

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