On Saturday Andrew, Nathan, Emily and I were all lounging in our bed until 9:00, waiting to start the day as long as possible after Nathan’s nightly eating schedule of a meal every 90 minutes (which he is still following – and fits into 6 month clothes for length because of it). As we were chatting, we realized we had no idea how old Nathan was. Absolutely zero clue. Andrew pulled out his calendar and began counting the weeks and made it all the way to eleven.
The last few days I’ve started the process of reorganizing and deep cleaning our home. It feels like I am reclaiming our space and giving us a fresh start. This is only made possible by the fact Emily likes to lay next to Nathan and write and read to him. And make requests of songs for me to sing which lately have been either the cougar fight song or the abc song.
It took eleven weeks before we had our first “incident” with Emily and Nathan. Andrew was washing dishes and I was making lunch while Nathan was napping on the couch and Emily was dancing and spinning to music. Then it got quiet. Really quiet. I went around the corner and found Emily next to Nathan prying his eyes open. When she saw me she said, “Nathan wake up! By himself” with a reassuring head nod. Hmmm.
Shortly after Nathan was in my arms in the kitchen while Andrw was doing dishes and Emily was running around and spinning. Time slowed down for a split second as Nathan spit up all over me, himself, and the floor and Emily came running in to tell us something and wiped out in Nathan’s spit up on the floor. Then we all just stood there taking in the moment….then Andrew sprang into action with a, “Nobody move!” to the rest of us until he did some preliminary safety clean up.
Emily is the most naturally athletic person I know, maybe only second to her Aunt Christine. She will run and dance and spin for hours. She has had the summersalt mastered for months. She can do leg lifts from the floor to her head – complete 180 degrees – over and over and over again without second thought. Andrew has taught her how to do wheelbarrow and she can run her arms around across the room with her crazy impressive upper body strength. Earlier in the week as she was dancing I made the comment, “Heavenly Father gave us our bodies so we could be happy. Wasn’t that so nice of him?” Emily’s response: an enthusiastic verbal and signed, “thank you”. She now includes “thank you for Emily’s body” in her prayers and “Jesus loves Emily’s body” in the list of people that she tells us Jesus loves. That sweet girl gave me an incredibly important reminder to be grateful for my body, and to thank God for it too.
And that sweet girl is so sweet. Yesterday we made it through the entire Sunday without a single temper tantrum, or even whine, from anyone. Emily was the epitome of pleasant, happy, helpful, obedient, kind, and fun – which is her normal. At the end of the day Andrew suggested we all play a game together after dinner and Emily choose the race game without any hesitation. We ran around together, pausing to tickle Emily, which eventually progressed to flipping Emily. Her love language is physical touch for sure. Not only is tickling big, but she requests back and shoulder rubs, drawing on her hands with our finger, snuggling and cuddling together, especially when she feels sad, and loves it when she can sit on our lap to eat if she is really tired or overwhelmed. Andrew and I were talking about this a few days ago when Andrew had the biggest breakthrough ever – maybe this is why she gets so upset when we pick her up when we are trying to help her obey. Let’s just hold her hand instead – as little physical contact as possible. It makes a huge difference.
She wore pigtails all day Sunday and she looked like a little girl. Not a toddler. I came downstairs after Emily’s nap (and I finished reading the book I started the night before) to find Nathan and Andrew sleeping on the couch. For the first time since he was born I looked at Nathan and realized he is truly getting bigger and is loosing the newborn look. We are growing up. Not bad for eleven weeks.