Dear Little Elephant,
You are 9 months old. While the next sentence doesn’t actually make mathematical sense, I can’t get it out of my head. Today I look at you and think: 9 months. You have been out as long as you have been in. You are starting the part of your life where more than ½ is outside of Mama.
Too be honest, that makes me a little sad. I know it doesn’t make you further away. I know that growing up is a wonderful thing. I know that we are still uber close. But, still. A little sad.
This month one thing is clear: you love people. You love to be the center of attention. You love people more than things. More than toys. More than food. More than technology.
We are in Thailand staying in a hotel. When I carry you through the lobby (or the pool, or restaurant, or the bar, or past the cleaning service), we are met with the staff cooing your name over and over. Everyone knows you and everyone loves you. You are still walking while holding Mama or Papa’s hands (although Dada reports that today you stood up just using the floor, up until now you have need a piece of furniture or a person). In the hotel lobby you first walk over to the staff located near the elevator, then you walk over to see the people working at the bar, then you walk over to the front desk staff and the concierge desk (this group usually stops to take photos with you), then you walk up to each person sitting in the lobby and demand attention. If they pay no attention to you, you shriek at the top of your lungs. Mama and Papa tell you that this is not good manners and not acceptable. You do it anyways.
We are learning to swim this month and you love to be in the water. You splash. You smile. You kick with your legs (it is butterfly like as your hips move as well). Sometimes we bring down the rubber duckie or elephant to play with in the pool. You love to “swim” after them. You like when Mama or Dada pulls you along on the water, so you are skimming over the top like a speed boat. Except, sometimes you smile to wide, open your mouth and get a lot of water in. You do NOT like to float on your back.
You also do not like the sun hats Mama makes you wear.
This month you have learned to drink from a straw. Mango smoothies come out of a straw and therefore you insist that ALL straws are YOURS and YOURS ALONE. Yum! You do love mangos from a straw. You also like papaya, beet juice, carrot juice, kiwi, guava, pineapple, watermelon, other melon, blackberry, strawberry, blueberry and more.
Last month you also had your first cold. It broke our hearts to hear you cough, sounding like an old man who had smoked too long. When you were lethargic and just lay on Mama, I would have done anything to make you better. Dada would have too. Luckily, with a bit of medicine, lots of breast milk, and some time in the sun, you are all better.
Little Elephant, each day you get stronger and bigger and smarter and more beautiful. And each day I love you so much more than the day before. It seems impossible, but it is true.