I need to set aside more time for this–I can hardly keep up with Savina’s milestones. Just a couple days ago she reached four little milestones in one day!! Well, two big ones and two small ones.
Since my last post, Savina has perfected her free-standing. On Sept. 2 she stood up by herself without leaning on anything, not even putting her hands on the floor. She then proceeded to attempt taking a step. She lifted her foot maybe half a centimeter off the floor, then fell on her butt. A few mintues later she decided to do squatts near a bookshelf, by pulling out toys, kneeling down to pick them up, and straightening back up, all without holding on to anything. So yep, she definitely has the balance and the strength. And when I assist her in walking (which she has been doing since she was 7 months old), she displays that she also has the coordination. So why isn’t she walking yet? Simple: she has to put these three principles together. Strength. Balance. Coordination. She has them all–she just hasn’t used them together.
She is making progress though. Sunday morning she took an independent step towards me, while I was blowing Gymboree Bubbles. She took a single step–twice, in order to get to my bubble blower. She hasn’t dared since, but she’s well on her way to walking.
Big milestone number two: Savina slept through the night for the very first time Sunday night. She slept from Saturday 8pm until 7:15 Sunday morning. I was taken quite by surprise by that. Of course my breasts became fully engorged, so I was happy that she was staaarving when she woke, and naturally I woke several times at night, checking the monitor, wondering whether I had slept through a desperate cry for Mommy. Mothering is so intuative. She has not slept through the night since, and has instead returned to doing gymnastics at two in the morning, so I suppose Sunday night was merely a preview. She seems to do that every time before her sleep pattern changes. She gives me a little preview of what is to come down the road. She did it back when she was 2.5 months old for a week (5 hrs uninterrupted sleep!); she did it a couple or so months ago for three days (7-8 hrs uninterrupted sleep!). And now one day (sleep through the night!). Personally, I’m not ready for her sleeping through the night. She slept the whole time in her crib, because that’s where we always start her out in the evening. I feel that I will miss waking up with my baby next to me–the first thing I see when I open my eyes being Savina.
I was a little sad when Savina decided that she was old enough to sleep in her own space, rather than sleep on top of Mommy, as she had been for the first 7-8 months or so of her life. One day she started deliberately rolling off my belly/chest before falling asleep. Yep, she had started becoming independent. So, sleeping through the night all in her crib will make me sad again, but I’ll probably get used to it after some time. It’s one of those things, you know, the whole “letting go”-process has already started (and here I thought that wouldn’t start until 18yrs old–wrong!). At the same time, if Savina transitions fully to her crib, it will make a second pregnancy down the road a lot easier. We’ll see what happens next, right?
Savina’s dancing has evolved. She likes rocking it to many other musical occasions now, not just by her toy, and she even starts dancing when I sing to her, mostly to the song “This Train.” She also showed us, a few days after the first dancing video, how she can dance without holding on:
My little baby girl cares a lot about what? Kitty of course! So she started pointing at cats in books when I ask her, “Where is the kitty?” or, “Wo ist die Katze?” She uses her whole hand to point though. Pointing with just one finger is something she is still trying to figure out. I can ask about everything else under the moon–she will point only for the cat.
Signing has evolved as well. She used to make the sign for “milk” when she wanted to nurse. Then she learned the sign for “drink” when she was thirsty and wanted her sippy cup. She began to sign “drink” a lot, and adapted it to mean “drink,” “want,” “more,” and “milk/nurse.” That’s right, Savina abandoned the “milk” sign, and now everything is “drink.” She does wave goodbye as well, and she has signed “more” once this past weekend. I’m so excited to see her learn more signs soon. We are taking a class, which will be so much fun! Daddy is on board too, which is a huge help. The more people sign to Savina, the more she will learn it. Also, signing builds trust, so we encourage all our family and friends to sign to Savina as well!
Some time ago we discovered a huuuuuge stuffed bear at BJ’s. I could not resist in picking it up for Savina. Daddy has named the bear “B.J.” and Savina is all over him. When we came home with the bear, Savina hugged B.J.– it was the first time ever she had hugged anything! Since then she has also cuddled with Daddy and me. I love it. When she wakes up from a nap, and I pick her up from her crib, she bends over my shoulder to see the bear and reaches out for him, meaning she wants to cuddle and play with B.J. So sweet.
Savina is a little actress by the way, too. A few days ago, she was playing with Mommy and Daddy in the bed. She stood up by herself, then fell to the side and slumped down, but she did all this complete with a facial expression and gestures like a theatrical act of swooning. It was so hilarious I laughed until I cried.
Below, some pictures of our picnic at Grey’s Beach in Yarmouth on Sunday. Had a blast!
Another little milestone: Savina clearly initiated a game! She began playing peek-a-boo with Daddy around B.J. It was adoooorable. In the end she moved around, reaching out to Daddy, as if to say “hah! I got you–I win.” with a big smile.
Lots of babbling going on as well. Savina continues to expand her vocabulary. She now gives us a lot of “a-ja!” “ja!” “ta ta ta,” “gaaaa,” “go gogogo go,” “ga ga ga ga!” and cutest of all: “wooooaaaa” “wwooowww” “wwwwuuuaaa” “waaaoo” She loves experimenting with the “w.” I think the wows and woas come from me saying “wow” so much to her when we show her new things–and of course, in a baby’s life almost everything is new the next day, so imagine that. It is also quite adorable when she says “ga ga ga ga!” very fiercely, as if to make sure we all understand the seriousness of this hugely important thing she just found out about. And of course, she continues to say “mama” a lot. Lately she crawls to me, or holds on to me while getting up, then walks towards me while holding on to me, when saying “mama” or “mamamama.”
About a couple weeks ago we went to the zoo with Savina. At first I had gone to the Zooquarium, but I was very disappointed. It should be called Farmquarium. This was no zoo… most animals were simple farmanimals. Savina still loved it of course, as she loves all animals. I decided we needed to go to a real zoo. I wanted to show Savina some big and dangerous animals as well as exotic ones. We visited Southwick’s Zoo and had a wonderful time. Savina was so excited. We made sure to leave just before her morning nap, so she could nap on the way there, which she did. She then held out almost four hours of active zoo walking and gaping, screamed a lot of excitement at the animals, and was then very tired by the time we were done. We did not get to see all of the animals. There was just not enough time, and some were hiding, too, but it was well worth it. We took many pictures and videos and I cut together a short summary of our adventure:
One last thing I want to talk about is something many people have said to me in the past few months, but especially lately. I’m sure you all know the common “warning” by other mothers, relatives, friends, people who only mean well, people who don’t know any better, and most importantly, people who don’t know how you are parenting your baby:
“Don’t push it.”
By that, of course, people are referring to a proud mother demonstrating her baby’s new skills, in particular standing, crawling, walking, as if such advancement was the worst thing that could ever happen to your baby–or to you.
I’m honestly tired of hearing this. When I hold my baby’s hands so she can walk, help her stand up, and show her off because she has learned to do this, regardless of how old she is at the time, the last thing I wish to hear is, “Don’t push it.” or similar statements.
First off, it’s none of anyone’s business how hard I “push” my baby’s smartness. And secondly, who are you to say that that’s what I’m doing? It so happens that my baby asks me to help her to stand, to crawl, or to walk. Savina started walking assisted at 7 months. Early? Maybe, but it wasn’t my choice, it was hers. I didn’t make her do it, she did it all of her own accord. Yes, I will support my child in her endeavours, because why not??? I’m her mother, I’m supposed to support her and cheer her on in just about everything she attempts. Why would I instead go about stopping her from learning something new, just because maybe I am not ready for it? And who are you to judge whether I’m ready for her walking or not? Who are you to say I, her mother, mind, or I will be bothered by it? And even if you were right about that, again, it’s not my choice, it’s hers. Ready or not, Savina will figure it out, whether with my help or without.
But please, don’t assume just because she’s doing it, and I’m helping her, that I’m trying to make her do something she is either not ready or not wanting to do!