My little Cal-puppy,
Congratulations, my love. You’re officially out of the fourth trimester, that time in infancy when, if we were any other species, we wouldn’t have been born yet. Thanks to our big skulls housing our big brains, we humans have to be born when we’re still basically fetuses, which can be tough on parents and babies. But now you’re three months old, all ready for the world.
To be honest, you have been a pretty sweet and chill guy since you were newborn, so the fourth trimester wasn’t even that awful. Still, it’s nice now that you’re completing your basic tasks more predictably. You’re sleeping more reasonably: you’re not much of a napper, but you do a good job at night. You’re eating just fine: I stopped recording your feedings and am just nursing you as you request it, since you’re growing and thriving. You’ve been in three-to-six month sized clothes for a couple of weeks now, which makes me ache a little, but it’s better than shrinking. You poop and pee copiously, as a baby ought.
You’ve got a fantastic, huge, and quick smile. You’re starting to laugh. It’s not completely regular yet, but it’s unmistakable. You even laughed at my old favorite “Pew, pew, stinky feet” joke.
I put you in the same striped outfit that I photographed your brothers in around this age, but I didn’t manage to get a surefire winner in that photo session. I’ll have to try again on another good-light-in-the-bedroom day and post that next month. I have a three-up frame all picked out. I’m glad we’re done having babies, because I don’t think I’ve ever seen a frame for four five-by-seven photos that matches our general frame aesthetic.
I’m also glad we’re done having babies because kids are a lot of work. Fortunately, you have a very sweet disposition, and that helps a lot.
You’re starting to discover your hands and your capacity for grabbing things. Your aim still isn’t very precise, but you’re pretty good at getting your hands into your mouth. I really hope you don’t end up a thumb-sucker. We tried to give you a pacifier, but you weren’t really into it. I breathed a sigh of relief to some degree, because breaking a kid of a pacifier habit seems like a huge pain. But thumbs are a much bigger headache—cutting them off doesn’t seem like a good option, because I like you as a primate—so I hope you don’t get too attached.
Your favorites haven’t changed a lot yet. You like milk, watching your brothers, cuddling up under my armpit, your bouncy seat (until you don’t), your swing (until you don’t), and going on walks. One thing that’s been frustrating is that you no longer conk out when your dad wears you in the mei-tai wrap. That has complicated bedtime. Now, instead of sleeping peacefully with your dad downstairs while I put your brothers to bed, I have to get you to sleep and then scamper off to put your brothers to bed. Sometimes you stay asleep, sometimes you don’t. When you don’t, I have to stop what I’m doing with your brothers and go address your needs, and then your dad takes care of the big boys. He doesn’t mind doing it, but for some reason my presence is in high demand from everyone at bedtime. I’m not sure why lying next to me in the dark is so much better than lying next to him in the dark, but it’s everybody’s first choice.
I hope one day to lie next to your dad in the dark again. You’re pretty happy in your position right next to me for now, though. I’m sure we make quite a picture. You start out in the middle of the bed on a pad to catch any puke or diaper leakage, but you scoot closer and closer to me throughout the night. You often manage to pivot so your head is right up against me but your feet are pointing out toward the side of the bed. I have the sheet and comforter only up to my waist to keep your head away from possible suffocators, and I have a small blanket that I can put on my upper body but keep off you. I also sleep with a sock over my eyes to block the light from the lamp I keep on so I can check periodically that you’re in a safe position or to locate the nose suction apparatus if you’re stuffed up. Everything’s an adventure.
And, like a little edelweiss, every morning you greet me. Your smiles are really the best.
We’ve been taking a lot of walks together, now that the springtime is warming up the air. I love this time of year, with the tree buds poking out and the first flowers starting to show. We’re even in that miraculous few days when the magnolia trees are in bloom but they haven’t shed all over the lawns and sidewalks yet. I was telling your dad the other day, I think a winter baby is harder than a summer baby during late pregnancy, with all the hassle of trying to put on boots and winter gear and worrying about slipping on ice and weather emergencies that complicate travel. But the upside of a winter baby is that now you’re a spring three-month-old, and we can get out together and enjoy that amazing rebirth that our side of the globe goes through every March and April.
Blossom of snow, may you bloom and grow.
I love you, my Callum.